E! Defends Paying Catt Sadler Less Than Jason Kennedy

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Cosmopolitan Fun Fearless Men and Women at the Mandarin Oriental Ballroom on March 5, 2012 in New York City.

E! is setting the record straight on Catt Sadler's reported pay.

Frances Berwick, president of NBCUniversal's lifestyle networks, spoke out Tuesday at the Television Critics Association press tour after Sadler claimed she left E! News due to a "massive disparity" in salary with co-host Jason Kennedy.

"There is a lot of misinformation out there," Berwick told reporters, according to Entertainment Weekly. "Catt Sadler and Jason Kennedy had different roles and therefore different salaries. Catt was focused on daytime. Jason Kennedy is on primetime evening news, plus red carpet."

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"Our employees' salaries are based on their roles and their expertise, regardless of gender," she explained, according to Variety. "So we wish Catt well, but I hope that sets the record straight on that."

Sadler said in a blog post Dec. 19 that she quit E! News after learning Kennedy was earning "close to double" her pay. She told People it was "heartbreaking" to ask for and not receive a salary bump.

"Not only did [E!] refuse to pay me as much as my male counterpart, but they didn't even come close—nowhere close, not even remotely close," the star said.

"It's almost insulting because you know, you work really hard. I'm a single mom of two kids. I've given my all to this network," she added. "And when you learn something like that, it makes you feel very small and underappreciated and undervalued."

E! initially responded to Sadler in December by saying the network "compensates employees fairly and appropriately based on their roles, regardless of gender."

By Annie Martin

Originally published in UPI Entertainment News.