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Marist revokes O’Reilly honorary degree amid harassment claims

Former TV cable news host Bill O'Reilly graduated

Former TV cable news host Bill O'Reilly graduated from Marist College in 1971 and received an honorary degree in 2001. Credit: Getty Images / Ilya S. Savenok

Marist College in Poughkeepsie has revoked an honorary degree it awarded to former Fox News commentator Bill O’Reilly, according to a statement posted Sunday on the school’s website.

The statement referenced the sexual harassment claims made against O’Reilly during his time at Fox News and reports that the network paid millions to settle harassment cases against him. O’Reilly, who was raised in Levittown and now lives in Manhasset, hosted “The O’Reilly Factor” from 1996 until his departure from the cable news channel last April.

“To many, his reported payments of tens of millions of dollars and dismissal by Fox News lend credibility to the allegations against him,” the statement reads. “Any form of sexual harassment or abuse is deeply contrary to the values of Marist College.”

A representative for O’Reilly could not immediately be reached for comment.

The former cable news host graduated from Marist in 1971 with a degree in history and was awarded an honorary degree from the college in 2001 when he gave its commencement address, a Marist spokeswoman said.

O’Reilly also donated $1 million to the school in 2015, according to a news release on Marist’s website.

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