Fox News anchor Shepard Smith opened up about his sexuality during a speech at the University of Mississippi’s Meek School of Journalism’s conference on April 21.
The Clarion-Ledger reports Smith, 53, told the crowd that he had “nothing to hide” about his sexuality. Until the conference, the closest Smith had come to publicly admitting he was gay was in an interview with the Huffington Post in October. When asked if former Fox News CEO Roger Ailes had ever made homophobic comments and prevented him from coming out the anchor replied, “No. He was always good to me.”
“And when I told the truth, I guess it was considered that I outed myself. I didn’t even think about it, because I didn’t think I was in,” Smith said in reference to the interview.
Smith, who married Virginia Donald in 1987 before divorcing in 1993, explained why he chose to be closeted for so long.
“A. You’re going to hell for it. B. You’ll never have any friends again. C. What are you going to tell your family? And by the way, you’re on television on the craziest conservative network on Earth,” Smith says. “That will probably put you in front of a brick wall. Of course, none of that was true, but that’s how it felt.”
Now Smith says he focuses on work and confirmed he is in a relationship.
“I don’t think about it. It’s not a thing. I go to work. I manage a lot of people. I cover the news. I deal with holy hell around me. I go home to the man I’m in love with,” Smith says.