EXCLUSIVE: Edleen John set to LEAVE the FA amid claims of bullying colleagues – as England team’s diversity advisor loses her six-figure salary job after 22 months following multiple complaints and an internal investigation
- Edleen John set to leave the FA as England’s diversity consultant
- John, who was also their director of international relations, corporate affairs and co-partner for equality, diversity and inclusion, was axed over bullying claims
- In the original complaint that triggered the probe, she was accused of shouting, giving unjust criticism, using aggressive tactics and malicious behaviour
The England team’s diversity advisor Edleen John is set to leave her role as one of the Football Association’s most senior executives following a damning investigation into claims she bullied colleagues.
The FA have declined to comment but news of John’s departure is expected to be confirmed in the coming days.
The Cambridge graduate has now removed her association with the FA from her personal Twitter bio.
The bombshell development comes after our exclusive revelations on March 10 that John was the subject of a written complaint from an FA employee, who accused the high-ranking official of intimidating behaviour, shouting, being dismissive, giving unjust criticism, using aggressive tactics and malicious behaviour.
John was appointed to the FA’s senior management team as director of international relations, corporate affairs and co-partner for equality, diversity and inclusion in September 2020 but her shock departure is imminent.
The FA are losing one of their most senior directors, Edleen John (pictured), following a two-month internal investigation over allegations that she had bullied her colleagues
John (centre) was accused of shouting and using aggressive tactics in the original complaint
John had played a key role in educating England stars about the issue of equality, diversity and inclusion (pictured, England players taking a knee against racism ahead of kick-off last month)
We disclosed on June 30 that, following an internal investigation carried out by an external body on behalf of the FA, the governing body took the significant step of sanctioning a full hearing into John’s conduct – a development that provided a clear indication that she was almost certain to be formally disciplined.
The tribunal was led by senior FA board member Sue Hough, who is understood to have worked closely with an employment lawyer during the process.
And Sportsmail has learned that the hearing’s recommendation is that John, who earns a significant salary, should no longer continue at the FA.
The decision has been communicated to the senior director and her exit will be formalised in due course.
News of John’s departure has also been relayed to English football’s leading stakeholders.
Sportsmail exclusively revealed earlier this year that John stood accused of bullying by a fellow FA employee.
At the time the complainant did not want the correspondence to be treated as a formal grievance, a process which would have automatically triggered an investigation.
Nevertheless, following further enquires the FA decided to launch the probe – a process that resulted in the organisation receiving at least three more similar complaints from colleagues.
Sportsmail have also been made aware of at least four separate grievances linked to John’s behaviour away from the FA inquiry; three of which are from groups with connections to English football.
John’s influence at the Football Association had grown since her hiring in September 2020
However, following the initial complaint about John more then soon followed to the FA
Prior to the investigation, it is understood the FA offered John the opportunity to take paid leave while enquires were being carried out. The FA executive refused the proposal.
In a statement released to Sportsmail at the time we reported the original complaint, John described herself as an ‘activist’ who is ‘direct’ in her communication style but insisted she did not mean to intimidate anyone.
News of her exit comes just four months before the World Cup in Qatar kicks-off.
John had played a lead role in advising Gareth Southgate’s side on how they could take a stand against the highly-documented human rights atrocities in the Islamic state.
She was also key in delivering the FA’s historic Football Diversity Leadership Code in addition to a host of other projects aligned with the organisation’s focus on improving social matters and has been at the forefront of the organisation’s work towards how to deal with the human rights issues linked to the World Cup in Qatar later this year.
It is understood the FA offered John the opportunity to take paid leave while enquires were being carried out but she refused (pictured, Wembley Stadium – the home of English football)