Gretchen Carlson addresses reports of turmoil at Miss America

As the pageant was rocked by sweeping changes in recent months, some state-level officials have expressed "no confidence" in the board of trustees.
6:24 | 07/09/18

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Transcript for Gretchen Carlson addresses reports of turmoil at Miss America
and that new be behind the scenes at miss ame after the organization dropped the swimsuit competiti and other changes. Now,e are calling for members of T board to resign. Chairwoman Gretchen Carlson, sh going T respond and join us live I just a moment. We're looking forward T talk to her as always and, Y, you're back with more. You'll remember, of courseat Gretchen carlsos a former miss americaheelf and took the reins of T organition following an epic scan alleging sm, corruption and abuse of Prus leadership. Early advocate of the me too movement Carlson quicklynacted change includingnnouncin the end of the geant'swi competition but now an intern war is brewing. This morning, a clash over the direction miss America, the organization in turmoil just one month after N chairwoman Gretchen con oversaw sweeping changes to the famous contest incng the elimination of themsuit contest revealed right her on "Gma." We willoonger judge our ca on their outward physical appearance. Reporter: But now the organization bit divided. Representatisigned a pretty calling for the immediate resignatio of Gretchen Carlson and the prent and CEO Regina hopper saying they have N confidence in miss America's adship. This as four board members Ed. An executive Dirr of the miss Tennessee pageant - the story has been spun to try and shift Ito the swimsuit competition bee it has been eliminated this year but that's not what this is about. It's truly about operations and how the organization is currently progressing under this leadership. Reporter: Carlson's critics sayaron and the board were but transparent about the move to elimite the swimsuit contest. And iome cases even deceptive. It was stated T us we could either have a test or we can have T swimsuit competition. There was never any gray area in Ben. Reporter: But also over the weekend re than 30 former miss Amer pdging their support to C and the current adership. The miss America organization partner negotiations in which the eliminate ohe swimsuit contest was a pquisite adding not everyoneees with every decision. E miss America organization will continue toe on to those dated to providin scholarships and opportunities to young women. The orgation also saying as with any transition there are those who find itd to accept change. Throughout its 97 yeaiss America has evolved with times. Robin. Amy, thankyou. Gretchen Carlson is the woman of the miss ame organion and she joins us now live from WAGT Gretchen, always a pleasure to see you speak with you and I know it has been quite a ekend. You're under some fire from inside your own organization, so tell us how you respond to th state pageant officials who are lling for your resignation and that of the Bo Well, robi thank so much to you and to ABC for having me on this morning. ABC, of is ourelecast partner and the competition will be live onmber 9th so thank you so much. En, change is difficult. You know, when I T O this role of L this organization six Ms ago, we had a lot work to don swimsu has been a part of miss er since it started in 1921 and many of theolteers and state eds, executive direct have been nd for a long time and it is tradition. But at the same this board unously decide that we needed to move this program forward and we so thrilled with the people thathave heard fromso many moms and ds and young women who are now telling hank you for making tore inclusive because we toowant to show our leahip skills and earn scholars dollars to go to college. I foe ts always been a part of the compeon and know it's something you want to kno cuss on more as far as the scholarship and T other aspects of it I know that the move is to rebrand miss America. Do youelieve S believe you're going maybe far too fast with th Oh, not at all. This was something that the boarded a spirited discussion about. LI, want to pay tribute to tradition and we believe that physical appearance and beauty and being fit,hat is empoweringwe're just not going to judge won that anymore. And I WOU love to just say that we have been so inclusive, we sed this board with stakeholders of this nization. That had never been done fore. We had two state executive directors who were the voice for the statesnd two former state titleholders who were the voice fo that oup. We have three formes Americas who are the voice and communion lines have been more transnt than ever before and we'll continue work on that because this organization iuilt by volunteers and we appreciate all of theireffort. I think people forget about th the number volunteers. There's only a small number that aren staff the vast maty especially at the state L arelunteers. Tell us about the - walk us through the process of eliming the swimsuit competit also changing the eveningown, making it Opal ine ways. S, so T you for asking about that beca there W a lot of misinformatiut the evening gown categ and basically it's bee theast couple of years thatdidates have the choice of wearing someing different so we were just retelling that candidates that, look, you, wear whatever you feel mos self-confident in and the way in wh you feel the most glamorous and the most Sas and, you know, the most lfdent to ce out on stage and giving them a choice with that and the swimsui competition will be instead replaced with something that's more San about the candidate, so that theiewing audience watching on ABC can learn more about theivual and why they might actually be the bt person for the job of mimerica. All right, we're about two Monty from the competition. Yes. I don't exphat we'll see any morengesr will we between andthen? Oh I doubt you know, we'reking through this in the best way that we can 're thrilled that so many people are positive about I and it's more inclusindore young women are going to be able to get scholarships to go to college? That's the important thing. Thanu, Gretchen. Ale you. Applause ]

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