Did Apple CEO Tim Cook Get Outed by a CNBC Host? Watch and See the Awkward Moment for Yourself

Businessman took over for Steve Jobs

By Lily Harrison Jun 27, 2014 11:49 PMTags
Tim CookNoah Berger/Bloomberg via Getty Images


Things got really awkward during a CNBC segment on Squawk on the Street when New York Times columnist Jim Stewart was discussing his book on closeted executives, The Glass Closet: Why Coming Out Is Good for Business.

Stewart spoke to the panel about John Browne, the former CEO of BP, before explaining that he had reached out to several gay CEOs at major companies who all politely declined to go on record for his book.

And that's when things took a sharp right down uncomfortable street.

Simon Hobbs, the co-host of the program, interjected with, "I think Tim Cook is fairly open about the fact that he is gay at the head of Apple, isn't he?"

Everyone in the panel became silent and began staring at one another, hoping someone would chime in with some sort of an answer.

"Oh dear, was that an error?" Hobbs added.

Stewart refused to confirm or deny Cook's sexuality, saying, "I don't want to comment on anybody who might or might not be. I'm not going to out anybody, and I called a lot of people, and no one at any major company would allow their names to be used."

To be fair, Cook has never publically addressed the subject matter, but he did speak about discrimination last year during an appearance at Auburn University.

"Since these early days, I have seen and have experienced many types of discrimination and all of them were rooted in the fear of people that were different than the majority," he told the crowd.

Cook also topped Out magazine's list of the most influential gays and lesbians in America back in 2012, and has appeared on the list multiple times.