'NCIS: New Orleans' Showrunner Exits Following Misconduct Investigations

Brad Kern - Getty - H 2017
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Six months after misconduct allegations surfaced around NCIS: New Orleans boss Brad Kern, CBS and producers CBS Television Studios have replaced him as showrunner.

Exec producer Chris Silber has been elevated to take over the Scott Bakula-led spinoff in its recently ordered fifth season. Kern will remain a consultant on the drama. 

The move comes months after news broke that Kern had twice been investigated following multiple complaints about workplace hostility. 

"We were aware of these allegations when they took place in 2016, and took them very seriously,” CBS TV Studios said in a December statement. “Both complaints were acted upon immediately with investigations and subsequent disciplinary action. While we were not able to corroborate all of the allegations, we took this action to address behavior and management style, and have received no further complaints since this was implemented.”

Those disciplinary actions are said to have included six months' worth of sensitivity training, which was completed in February 2017, and marked an end to the any official complaints filed.

Kern has been one of the more prolific writers and executive producers for CBS Television Studios. His credits before his 2015 arrival on the popular NCIS spinoff include The CW's Beauty and the Beast, the original Charmed and New York Undercover. He also has written for Remington SteeleThe Adventures of Brisco County Jr. and Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman. He got his start as a story editor on Hill Street Blues in 1986.

Kern is the latest of multiple showrunners to come under question since widespread testimonials of Harvey Weinstein's sexual misconduct and assault prompted a multi-industry push to cleanse out such behavior and anything similar. Investigations into sexual harassment claims made against The Royals showrunner Mark Schwahn and Supergirl and The Flash executive producer Andrew Kreisberg led to their dismissals. 

Salon was the first to report Kern's departure as showrunner.