Between Aaron Schock, Michael Sam, and the male American populace, The New York Times still considers being gay a newsworthy event. But in their latest report on the topic, the paper reveals that a certain number of wealthy, powerful C.E.O.s persuaded the Times to keep a lid on their sexuality. So who are they?
Today business columnist James B. Stewart identifies two men—Trevor Burgess of C1 Financial and Jason Grenfell-Gardner of IGI Laboratories—as “the only publicly gay chief executives of publicly traded American corporations.” Well, at least as far as Burgess, Grenfell-Gardner, and Stewart himself are aware:
There have long been gay chief executives at American corporations, including some who lead relatively open lives. How many remains a subject of speculation. Among current chief executives of publicly traded corporations, Mr. Grenfell-Gardner and Mr. Burgess are the first who are willing to be publicly identified as gay. Both said they weren’t aware of any others.
It’s not for a lack of effort that Stewart couldn’t find more than two openly gay chief executives (and none, apparently, among the Fortune 500). In an infamous appearance on CNBC in June, the veteran reporter described the frosty response he encountered after he began asking around: “Of course, there are gay CEOs at major companies, and I reached out to many of them, and I got an extremely cool reception, not one would allow to be named in the column.”
A second later, CNBC anchor Simon Hobbs interjected: “Tim Cook is fairly open about the fact that he’s gay at the head of Apple, isn’t he?” To which Stewart shook his head before adding, “I called a lot of people, and no one, at any major company, would allow their names to be used.”