GitHub Clears President Tom Preston-Werner, but He Resigns Anyway After Harassment Controversy
GitHub co-founder Tom Preston-Werner has resigned after the results of an internal investigation today cleared him and his wife of “sexual or gender-based harassment or retaliation, or of [creating] a sexist or hostile work environment.”
But, said current CEO and co-founder Chris Wanstrath, “while there may have been no legal wrongdoing, the investigator did find evidence of mistakes and errors of judgment.”
Allegations against Werner came to light when prominent GitHub engineer Julie Ann Horvath resigned. She took to Twitter to explain her decision, claiming extensive gender-based harassment at the open-source code platform.
In an interview with TechCrunch, she described a “bananas” situation at work in which President Preston-Werners’ wife Theresa would bully her in the office, female employees were gawked at and her private relationships became public discussion topics.
Wanstrath announced the Preston-Werner resignation on GitHub’s blog. Here is the post below:
Last month, a number of allegations were made against GitHub and some of its employees, including one of its co-founders, Tom Preston-Werner. We took these claims seriously and launched a full, independent, third-party investigation.
The investigation found no evidence to support the claims against Tom and his wife of sexual or gender-based harassment or retaliation, or of a sexist or hostile work environment. However, while there may have been no legal wrongdoing, the investigator did find evidence of mistakes and errors of judgment.
In light of these findings, Tom has submitted his resignation, which the company has accepted. Tom has been a huge part of this company from the very beginning and we appreciate all that he has done for GitHub. We wish him the best in his next endeavor.
As to the remaining allegations, the investigation found no evidence of gender-based discrimination, harassment, retaliation, or abuse. We want to create a great place to work for all our employees and we can’t do that without acknowledging the challenges that exist in providing an inclusive work environment. We are implementing a number of new HR and employee-led initiatives as well as training opportunities to make sure employee concerns and conflicts are taken seriously and dealt with appropriately. We know we still have work to do.
CEO & Co-Founder