Longtime E! News host Catt Sadler has exited the network after learning, she says, that her counterpart Jason Kennedy was being paid close to double her salary for some time — and despite attempts to renegotiate her contract. “My team and I asked for what I know I deserve and were denied repeatedly,” she writes on her personal blog, The Catt Walk.
Sadler, who hosted the two-hour live daytime show Daily Pop and also E! News on many nights, made her farewell on-air appearance on Tuesday.
She writes that she had been living a dream at E!, “It has been unpredictable, intoxicating, rewarding and hard work. Five days a week since February 2006. First, for The Daily 10 and later for E News.”
This year, she was named host of Daily Pop, “which meant double duty.” Around this same time, she writes, “An executive from E brought something alarming to my attention — namely, that there was a massive disparity in pay between my similarly situated male co-host and myself. More recently, when E reached out to renew and extend my deal, I learned that he wasn’t just making a little more than I was. In fact, he was making close to double my salary for the past several years.”
In an earlier interview with People, she said, “Not only did [E!] refuse to pay me as much as my male counterpart, but they didn’t come close — nowhere close, not even remotely close.”
Sadler continues on her blog, “Information is power. Or it should be. We are living in a new era. The gender pay gap is shrinking, although admittedly we have a long way to go. And well, I learned this first hand. My team and I asked for what I know I deserve and were denied repeatedly.”
The host, who bears no ill-will against Kennedy, adds, “Know your worth. I have two decades experience in broadcasting and started at the network the very same year as my close friend and colleague that I adore… But how can I operate with integrity and stay on at E if they’re not willing to pay me the same as him? Or at least come close? How can I accept an offer that shows they do not value my contributions and paralleled dedication all these years? How can I not echo the actions of my heroes and stand for what is right no matter what the cost? How can I remain silent when my rights under the law have been violated?”
An E! spokesperson told People on behalf of the network and Kennedy, “E! compensates employees fairly and appropriately based on their roles, regardless of gender. We appreciate Catt Sadler’s many contributions at E! News and wish her all the best following her decision to leave the network.”
Also on the blog, Sadler adds, “The unknown can be terrifying, but it can also be the most beautiful gift. Countless brave women have come forward this year to speak their truth. Females refuse to remain silent on issues that matter most because without our voices, how will we invoke lasting change? How can we make it better for the next generation of girls if we do not stand for what is fair and just today?”
Sadler tweeted about her final appearance and thanked fans for their messages while Kennedy posted a video sending her “lots of love and memories”: