Tom Ashbrook is an American journalist and radio broadcaster. He was formerly the host of the nationally syndicated, public radio call-in program On Point, from which he was dismissed after an investigation concluded he had created a hostile work environment. Prior to working with On Point, he was a foreign correspondent in Asia, and foreign editor of The Boston Globe. He currently hosts a podcast, Tom Ashbrook-Conversations.
|Born||1956 (age 62–63)|
Danielle Guichard-Ashbrook (m. 1975–2014)
Cathryn Ann Clüver (2017–)
|Children||3, a daughter and two sons|
Early life and educationEdit
Ashbrook worked in Alaska as a surveyor and dynamiter of oil fields to help pay for college. After leaving for Asia, he produced English-dubbed kung fu films in Hong Kong where he spent a decade as a foreign correspondent in India, Hong Kong, and Tokyo. His first newspaper job was at the South China Morning Post. During the late 1980s Ashbrook became foreign editor for The Boston Globe.
As a correspondent Ashbrook covered the "refugee exodus from Vietnam and the post-Mao opening of China, and has covered turmoil and shifting cultural and economic trends in the United States and around the world, from Somalia and Rwanda to Russia and the Balkans."
Ashbrook was a Nieman Fellow at Harvard University during which time he decided to leave the Globe in 1996 and create an Internet startup with college friend Rolly Rouse. This company eventually became homeportfolio.com. Ashbrook wrote a book called The Leap: A Memoir of Love and Madness in the Internet Gold Rush about his experience in Internet entrepreneurship.
On Point, dismissal, and subsequent workEdit
Ashbrook joined public radio following the September 11, 2001 attacks, when he was enlisted by NPR and WBUR-Boston for special coverage. He hosted the National Public Radio show On Point. Ashbrook oversaw a staff of 10 who assisted with research and show preparation – typically compiling information relating to the topics to be discussed on the following day's program for Ashbrook to take and read.
In December 2017, Ashbrook was placed on leave because of unspecified accusations of misconduct. His final broadcast was on December 8, 2017. WBUR later reported 11 men and women came forward detailing behavior including tirades, belittling critiques of show ideas, and name calling during meetings. Ashbrook allegedly would then give neck or back rubs, hugs, and "creepy" sex talks after criticism or critical comment. Boston University hired two law firms to investigate allegations against Ashbrook. One examined allegations of unwanted contact and the other looked into bullying behavior. On February 14, 2018, Ashbrook was dismissed from WBUR after both investigations concluded he had created a hostile work environment, although neither investigation concluded the harassment was sexual in nature. Ashbrook made a statement on the same day, saying that the decision was “profoundly unfair.” In subsequent news interviews, he described himself as "chastened" but determined to return to radio broadcasting "somewhere, sometime soon."
In June 2018 Ashbrook started recording shows of his own podcast "Tom Ashbrook-Conversations". He launched the podcast via twitter on August, 1st, 2018. The conversations cover issues of global importance such as racism, social media and the global balance of power. Featured guests on the show so far have included Steve Locke, Kori Schake, Salman Habib, Maya Jasanoff and Sir John Sawers. 
Tom Ashbrook has a daughter and two sons. On November 6, 2014, his wife of 39 years, Danielle Guichard-Ashbrook, died of cancer. Ashbrook subsequently married Cathryn Ann Clüver in June 2017, after meeting in March 2016 regarding an On Point story concerning refugees. He lives in Newton, Massachusetts.
Livingston Award for National Reporting – 1996
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- Ashbrook, Tom (2018-08-01). "Hi. I've been talking with some interesting people lately about the world and where we're going. You can listen to those conversations here. Be well! Tom". Retrieved 2018-08-09.
- Ashbrook, Tom (2014-11-06). "A Message From Tom Ashbrook". On Point. Retrieved 2014-11-06.
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