Hawaii’s Tourism Chief Steps Down Because of Racist, Pornographic Emails

The board members of Hawaii‘s State Tourism Authority accepted the resignation of Rex Johnson, the head of the agency, after a months-long investigation into emails sent and received from his office computer. Johnson was first reprimanded in August after an audit by the state uncovered pornographic emails on the computer. At that time, Johnson was reprimanded by the board. His salary was cut and his apology accepted.

However, further investigation revealed that the emails had been forwarded by Johnson to other email accounts. Some of the emails included remarks deemed racist and sexist by investigators. Rather than face further scandal, Johnson agreed to step down yesterday. The board was only too happy to accept the resignation. I guess poor Rex never learned the meaning of the acronym NSFW. But with tourism accounting for a large part of the Hawaii’s economy, the negative press from such a scandal could end up affecting the state’s image and tourism revenue.