Bethenny Frankel offends business women with alleged sexist and racist comments
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 04/14/2016
Bethenny Frankel reportedly offended many women during a speaking appearance at a business conference for women in New York City last weekend.
Frankel made some racist and sexist comments at the Project Entrepreneur event on Saturday, according to entrepreneur Mary Pryor, who was in attendance.
Pryor bashed the 45-year-old The Real Housewives of New York City star in a Huffington Post article as well as a series of tweets after the panel took place.
"I was one of the women who tried to stand up to reality TV star and Skinny Girl Vodka founder, Bethenny Frankel... And was silenced," Pryor wrote for the Post.
"I was stunned when Frankel implied that women should have sex with men in exchange for capital. I was offended when she expressed some kind of kinship with black women because she's 'loud.' And I was taken aback when she advised those of us in the room to get business advice to hire a white man as the face of our companies."
Pryor said "many of the women of color in the audience turned their heads in shock" during Frankel's speech.
"Not even when the wrong-headedness was called to her attention, Frankel didn't back down," Pryor claimed, adding that moderators shut down all of her attempts to speak out against Frankel's alleged statements.
"No apology. No acknowledgement of an ignorant reply. Just a comment from a moderator about 'breaking up a fight' and removing the mic from our hands."
After the Saturday event, Pryor tweeted how Frankel was "offensive and wrong," accusing the reality TV star of saying things that weren't "proper for a room full of female founders."
"I along with another ally of color stood up to address how offensive @Bethenny was to not just us but the entire room," she tweeted. "For @Bethenny to insist that a young, Black female founder 'Find a white guy' to rep her biz is a racial microaggression."
Pryor was also furious Project Entreprenuer failed to address the situation.
"For #PEIntensive16 to not issue an apology to the women of color in the room that were offended by her statement bothers me," she tweeted. "I am tired of being asked to be present in the room for female founders events & have my voice SHUT DOWN."
However, Project Entrepreneur recently released the following statement:
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"We understand that guests were offended during our Day 1 luncheon, following remarks made by our speaker. This was not our intention and is contrary to our goals. We apologize to our guests. We launched Project Entrepreneur to champion all women. We thank those of you who candidly spoke out and welcome this important dialogue. We look forward to continuing to empower women entrepreneurs as they build their businesses."