A woman who was an NBC correspondent in the early 1990s has claimed legendary news anchor Tom Brokaw tickled her and tried kiss her on separate occasions while she worked there.
Linda Vester told Variety in an interview published Thursday that she was going public with the allegations because she was unhappy with how the network was handling sex-harassment allegations against former “Today” host Matt Lauer.
She alleged Brokaw tickled her in an NBC conference room in Denver in 1993 while they were covering a papal visit.
“I’m standing there, and Tom Brokaw enters through the door and grabs me from behind and proceeds to tickle me up and down my waist,” she says in a video interview.
“I jumped a foot and I looked at a guy who was the senior editor of ‘Nightly [News],’ and his jaw was hanging open. Nobody acted like anything wrong was happening, but I was humiliated.”
Brokaw, 78, who has been married since 1962 and retired in 2004, denied any misconduct.
“I met with Linda Vester on two occasions, both at her request, 23 years ago, because she wanted advice with respect to her career at NBC,” he said in a statement issued by NBC to Variety.
“The meetings were brief, cordial and appropriate, and despite Linda’s allegations, I made no romantic overtures towards her, at that time or any other.”
NBC News did not respond to The NYPost’s request for comment on Thursday.
Vester, who was 28 at the time of the alleged incident, told Variety she didn’t report Brokaw’s conduct to the police or NBC human resources because she was scared it would end her career. She left NBC in 1999 and went on to anchor her own show on Fox News through 2006.
She’s speaking out now, because she believes her story sheds light on the culture at NBC News, where she believes male bosses treated their female colleagues as objects. After “Today” co-host Matt Lauer was fired for inappropriate conduct involving an NBC employee last November, NBC launched an internal review of its practices but didn’t bring in an outside firm to investigate — a step Vester believes is necessary to fix NBC’s culture.