Jets owner Woody Johnson 'made inappropriate or insensitive comments' as ambassador to UK: watchdog

1010 WINS Newsroom
August 12, 2020 - 1:40 pm
Woody Johnson

Photo by PA Images/Sipa USA


NEW YORK (1010 WINS) – A State Department watchdog report found Jets owner Woody Johnson “sometimes made inappropriate or insensitive comments” during his current role as ambassador to the United Kingdom.

“Through employee questionnaires and interviews, that the Ambassador sometimes made inappropriate or insensitive comments on topics generally considered Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO)-sensitive, such as religion, sex, or color,” the report said.

Listen Live Now on 1010 WINS

The 43-page report didn't delve into the specific accusations, but it did say Johnson's "demanding, hard-driving work style ... had a negative effect on morale in some embassy sections."

The Office of Inspector General found “a more thorough review by the Department is warranted” to see if Johnson violated workplace discrimination laws. However, that recommendation was rejected by the State Department, which said Johnson watched a "video on workplace harassment” and "encouraged all staff to take the Foreign Service Institute training on mitigating unconscious bias."

Johnson "is well aware of his responsibility to set the right tone for his mission and we believe his actions demonstrate that," the department said.

According to the New York Times, Johnson “rejected accusations that he made racially or sexually inappropriate comments toward employees at the U.S. Embassy in London” and asked department investigators not to publicly report those allegations.

Reports surfaced last month about accusations of inappropriate comments by Johnson. Among the accusations was that he made “racist generalizations about Black men” and “cringeworthy” comments about women’s looks, sources told CNN.