The top leadership of the Miss America Organization stepped down Saturday amid mounting backlash over leaked emails in which executives and organizers mocked former contestants. Pageant CEO Sam Haskell joined president Josh Randle in resigning. Haskell, who was suspended over the scandal on Friday, had been urged to step down by Gretchen Carlson and several other former Miss America winners. In the emails at the center of the controversy, Haskell called one former pageant winner “huge and gross” and joked that he wished one other winner had died instead of another ex-winner, according to HuffPost. Randle, who responded to Haskell’s derogatory comments in the email chain, apologized for his “lapse of judgment” but noted the “terrible situation was not caused or driven by me.” Lynn Weidner, the chairman of the organization’s board, has also resigned but will stick around for the transition period.
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