Matt Lauer is a popular American TV host and news anchor. His most prominent role was as co-host of NBC’s news and talk morning show The Today Show. His two-decade stint with The Today Show was however cut short in November 2017 after several allegations of inappropriate sexual conduct emerged against him.
Matt Lauer had been accused of inappropriate sexual behavior towards a female colleague in the workplace. The allegations have since been corroborated by other colleagues and former colleagues whose identities have remained hidden. Lauer’s termination was announced by his The Today show co-anchor Savannah Guthrie.
Throughout his career of several decades, Lauer got to hold several high-profile interviews including the one with Hollywood icon Tom Cruise, the Duke of Cambridge Prince William, and his younger brother Prince Harry.
Matt Lauer also co-hosted the opening ceremonies of the summer and winter Olympic games between 2008 and 2016. During America’s 2016 presidential election campaign, Lauer had separate interviews with Republican candidate Donald Trump and his Democratic counterpart Hillary Clinton.
With the spate of sexual misconduct scandals rocking several industries in the US, Lauer added his name to the number of high-profile individuals whose careers have been abruptly ended by such allegations. He didn’t only lose his job, his 19-year marriage to Annette Roque is also threatened.
Bio – The Early Days of Matt’s Life
Matt Lauer was born on December 30, 1957, in New York City. His mother Marilyn Lauer (née Gentry), owned a clothing store. His father, Jay Robert Lauer was of Romanian Jewish ancestry and a business executive of a bicycle manufacturing company.
The young Lauer had his high school education at Greenwich High School in Greenwich, Connecticut. Upon graduation, he proceeded to Ohio University’s Scripps College of Communication, School of Media Arts and Studies. However, Lauer dropped out in 1979 before he could finish his degree. He returned to the institution almost 2 decades later and was able to complete his studies and earn a degree in 1997.
His first job after quitting school in 1979 was as the producer of the daytime news at WOWK-TV in Huntington, West Virginia. He also served as the on-air correspondent for the evening and night newscasts.
After that, he moved around the US and served as a talk-show host on several local stations including the news and entertainment TV series PM Magazine in Providence. Between 1984 and 1986, Lauer was at WNEW-TV in New York. He also hosted Talk of the Town on Boston’s WNEV-TV. He was at WWOR-TV in Secaucus, New Jersey between 1989 and 1991.
His journey with the NBC network began in 1992 when he served as co-anchor of WNBC’s morning news and entertainment show Today in New York. That spot gave him the national exposure through which he made his way to NBC’s national organization.
Lauer joined The Today Show in 1994, and in 1997 was made co-anchor alongside Katie Couric. After Couric left The Today Show for CBS news in 2006, Lauer worked with Meredith Vieira as co-anchor followed by Ann Curry and finally with Savannah Guthrie.
Is Matt Lauer Married? Wife
Matt Lauer has been married twice. His first marriage was to TV producer Nancy Alspaugh in 1982. The marriage was dissolved after 7 years.
Lauer also got married to former Victoria’s Secret and J. Crew model Annette Roque. After a 5-month courtship, the couple tied the knot on October 3, 1998, at Bridgehampton Presbyterian Church. They had an intimate reception at a private estate in Water Mill, New York with only 100 guests.
Annette Roque was born in the Netherland capital Amsterdam. Her mother Johanna Struijk is Dutch while her father Henri Roque is from Indonesia. Annette Roque moved to Paris in her early 20s to pursue a career in modeling.
Beyond an illustrious career which he built over several years, Lauer’s inappropriate sexual activities have also cost him his marriage of nearly 20 years. He was first spotted without his wedding band in December 2017, a few weeks after he was fired from his job at NBC. This sparked off several rumors that all was indeed not well in Lauer’s home.
A few weeks after that, Lauer’s wife was also spotted without her own wedding band. In January 2018, it was reported that Lauer had moved out of his $33 million Hampton home. This gave more credence to the divorce rumors trailing Matt Lauer’s marriage. Well, it has also been reported that the couple has begun the divorce process.
It happens that Lauer has not had a smooth marriage, even though the newsman always tries to put up a “perfect dad” appearance. Way back in 2006, his wife Annette Roque had filed for divorce, alleging that Mauer had meted out “cruel and inhumane acts” against her. She, however, withdrew the papers after 3 weeks and things went back to “normal”.
About 4 years after that, there were media reports that the Today Show veteran had moved out of his family’s apartment and only visited his kids during weekends. The couple vehemently refuted those reports stating that their marriage was intact.
Matt Lauer’s Kids, Family
Matt Lauer did not have any children from his first marriage. However, his marriage to now estranged wife Annette Roque produced three children.
They welcomed their first son Jack Mattew in 2001, 3 years after their wedding. Two years after that, they welcomed their second child, a daughter named Romy in 2003.
In November 2006, months after Roque had filed for divorce due to Lauer’s alleged affair with a colleague, the couple had their last child, a son named Thijs.
While Matt Lauer might not be the perfect colleague to have in the office, he tries to be the best dad for his kids. Immediately after he got fired from NBC, Lauer hopped into his car and set out to find his oldest child, Jack so that he could break the news to him personally and spare him the pain of reading it online.
Also following that scandal that cost Lauer his job, there have been speculations that the former Today host also fathered 2 children with two different women while married to Annette Roque. Even though Matt Lauer has responded to the inappropriate sexual conduct allegations with an apology, he has not reacted to these other allegations.
Matt Lauer Salary and Net Worth
Before his career was brought to an abrupt halt, Matt Lauer was among the highest-paid news anchors on TV, falling behind the likes of Ellen DeGeneres and Judge Judy. Throughout his pretty illustrious career as a media personality, he amassed quite an enviable fortune for himself.
Matt Lauer’s net worth is currently estimated to be $80 million. If you are wondering how Matt Lauer built such a vast fortune for himself, here’s a little breakdown.
Before 2012, Lauer had been earning $17 million per annum. Then came the year 2012, the Today‘s host signed a 5-year deal with NBC which had him earning $25 million annually.
In 2016, before the expiration of his 5-year contract, NBC renegotiated with Lauer for an extra 2 years which would have had him earning $20 million each year till 2019. That contract was cut short when NBC terminated Lauer’s job in November 2017.
After his infamous sack by his longtime employers, his legal team has been working assiduously to get him a $30 million payout. Well, his former employers have made it known that they are not willing to hand him any payout since he violated a moral clause in his contract.
Even if Matt Lauer doesn’t get the remainder of the value of his NBC contract, he can always rely on his $80 million fortune while he thinks of creative ways to reinvent himself.