Valerie Hoff, a veteran news reporter for Atlanta station 11Alive, has resigned after a private exchange of her using the “n-word” with a Twitter user went public. Hoff claims she was just repeating the words the user applied but has apologized and stepped down without protest.
From the AJC Radio & Talk Blog:
Veteran 11Alive reporter Valerie Hoff resigned today two weeks after she jokingly used the N-word – the version with an “a” at the end of it – in a private message to a black man on Twitter that he publicized.
“I was quoting something the gentleman said in a public tweet back to him in a private message but that doesn’t make it any less offensive,” Hoff wrote me in an exclusive message. “It was incredibly stupid and reckless. I was in the middle of a pressure-filled day trying to chase down the video of a man being beaten and kicked by two Gwinnett police officers, which this particular gentleman had posted on twitter. I repeatedly apologized and continue to do so. I also offered to resign immediately.”
Her boss John Deushane offered this message: “11Alive does not tolerate any form of racial insensitivity and aggressively enforces our standard policies. We acted promptly to address this situation. Valerie Hoff has chosen to resign and apologizes for her actions.11Alive is committed to treating the communities we serve with dignity and respect.”
The Twitter user in the middle of the story, @CurtFromDaBlock, posted the video of the white officers beating a Black motorist and noted on his account that “news n*ggas” were trying to get rights to air the cellphone video footage. In the exchange, Hoff got comfortable and referred to herself as a “news n*gga” which didn’t sit well with @CurtFromDaBlock.
After posting the private messages, which included Hoff trying to explain that she was just repeating @CurFromDaBlock’s words, the damage was already done.
Hoff said in a written statement that she’s going to focus on being a stay-at-home mom and working on a personal blog venture.