An NBC News journalist was reportedly told by an unnamed manager at the network to dress “less Latina” and more like first daughter Ivanka Trump, prior to attending the White House Correspondents’ Dinner in 2017.
According to a report Thursday published by Newsweek, NBC News and MSNBC reporter Mariana Atencio made these claims in a book, Perfectly You:Embracing the Power of Being Real, which was published in June.
“Please don’t look too Latina,” a higher-up at NBC News allegedly told her, according to Newsweek.
When Atencio pressed the female manager about the meaning of her words, the manager reportedly suggested that Atencio go to Saks Fifth Avenue and have someone help her pick out something more understanding, after Atencio told the manager she had planned to wear an outfit in the colors of yellow, blue, and red to represent South American nations.
“Not too colorful or tight,” the manager allegedly said. “Think Ivanka Trump, okay?”
According to USA Today, Atencio had described the phone call as “weird” and said the request of the still-unnamed manager was “even weirder.”
Ivanka Trump, who is both the daughter of and an adviser to President Trump, has been known for her style. The first daughter had previously owned a clothing line that was shuttered in 2018, according to The Washington Post.
Ivanka Trump said she closed that business after complications arose due to her work in D.C., but other members of the Trump family have notably been reluctant to sever their ties with the businesses that they own, per The Washington Post.
White House Special Counsel Kellyanne Conway once famously told Fox News viewers to buy clothing from Ivanka’s clothing line, which violated federal law that prohibits public officials from using their positions to endorse products, per The Washington Post report.
Atencio has covered Latino issues for the network, specifically in the 2016 election, and during the aftermath of Hurricane Maria and Hurricane Irma in Puerto Rico, according to the report from Newsweek.
"Please don't look too Latina" https://t.co/mHRQ4de9Hd
— Tanzina Vega (@tanzinavega) August 15, 2019
The 35-year-old journalist, who emigrated from Venezuela to the United States, is still employed by the broadcast and cable news network. Atencio had shared a video of herself on Twitter reporting for cable network MSNBC as recently as Tuesday.
In that video, Atencio was reporting on recent immigration raids by ICE in Mississippi. Specifically, she reported about workers who lost their jobs at a poultry plant in the area, claiming in the report that employers had not been held accountable for their hiring practices.