CNN CEO Chris Licht apologizes to staff during internal Monday morning call

07070774" data-test="InlineImage">

Chris Licht, President and CEO, CNN Worldwide, speaks on stage during the Warner Bros. Discovery Upfront 2022 show at The Theater at Madison Square Garden on May 18, 2022 in New York City.

Kevin Mazur | Getty Images

CNN Chief Executive Officer Chris Licht apologized to the news organization’s employees during the cable news network’s 9 a.m. ET call on Monday morning, according to people familiar with the matter.

Licht told staffers he did not identify himself in a 15,000-word profile story in The Atlantic published Friday. The story documented his views on CNN’s coverage and his efforts to win over the staff during his first year on the job.

Some CNN staffers saw the Leitch magazine profile as poor judgment at a time when ratings were falling and staffers openly rebelled against its decision to air a Donald Trump town hall with hundreds of his fans last month. Were. warner bros discovery CEO David Zaslav was not pleased with the profile, titled “Inside the Meltdown at CNN,” and that it was handled unfairly, according to people familiar with his thinking.

Licht said during the call that he understood the frustration of the employees and intended to earn their employees’ trust, the people said. He didn’t talk specifically about why he attended Atlantic ProfileIn which reporter Tim Alberta spent months with Licht, including joining him in the gym during personal training sessions and attending backstage CNN programming rehearsals. Licht’s remarks were brief, said the people, who were not authorized to discuss the matter publicly.

A spokeswoman for CNN declined to comment.

Licht announced Thursday the hiring of David Levy as network new chief operating officer, Levi will be tasked with handling marketing, public relations, advertising sales, facilities and other logistics.

The move would allow Licht to focus more on programming, which is his background. Licht helped launch MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” in 2007 as its executive producer, and later became executive producer and showrunner of “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert” on CBS.

WATCH: David Zaslav, CEO of Warner Bros. Discovery, discusses the company’s performance on ‘Squawk Box’