ONE OF THE PLANTIFFSÂ ON JANUARY 20, 2013Â IN A RESOLVED CASE HAS ASKED ME TO DELETE HER NAME. SO ANOTHER NAME HAS BEEN DELETED
Subsequent to my original posting of this complaint, I was informed that one of the plaintiffs requested anonymity. I have adjusted it accordingly by redacting the name and substituting “Third Plaintiff.”Â I placed this federal complaint online after it was sent to me by a third party who explicitlyÂ grantedÂ permission. These women were denied tenure during the 2008-2009 academic year at DePaul University and have sued variously on the grounds of employment discrimination, gender and sexual orientation discrimination, age discrimination, retaliation and violation of their civil rights as protected under the 1964 Civil Rights Act. I have either met or e-mailed several of the complainants and once again we see a disturbing pattern in which many women and/or persons of colour are being arbitrarilyÂ denied tenure and promotion at DePaul. Furthermore, in 2007 Norman Finkelstein, one of DePaul’s most prolific scholars and outstanding teachers, was denied promotion because his published work angered those of a different ideological persuasion. I construed then and believe now that Dr Norman G. Finkelstein’s denial of tenure is one of the most egregious and shameful episodes in the history of American postsecondary education. Yet profound issues of a lack of justice, academic integrity and honour continue to plague DePaul University in its assessment of probationary faculty. (Bold emphases of AAUP are added)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE NORTHERN DISTRICT OF ILLINOIS
First Plaintiff, Jennifer Holtz, and Third Plaintiff,
v. Case No. 10-cv-8175
Plaintiffs First Plaintiff, Jennifer Holtz, and Third Plaintiff (collectively â€œPlaintiffsâ€), by and through their undersigned counsel, seek redress for employment discrimination and retaliation specifically for violations of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. Â§ 2000e et seq., as amended, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, 29 U.S.C. Â§ 621 et seq., and for supplemental relief under state law.
JURISDICTION AND VENUE
1. This action is authorized and instituted pursuant to Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended, 42 U.S.C. Â§ 2000e et seq., the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, 29
U.S.C. Â§ 621 et seq, the Illinois Human Rights Act, 775 ILCS Â§Â§ 5/2-102 and 1-103(Q), and by Illinois common law.
2. Jurisdiction of this Court is also invoked pursuant to 28 U.S.C. Â§Â§ 451, 1331, 1343, and 1367.
3. First Plaintiff timely filed a Charge of Discrimination, Charge No. 21BA01377, alleging gender and sexual orientation discrimination and retaliation against the defendant, DePaul Case: 1:10-cv-08175 Document #: 1 Filed: 12/24/10 Page 1 of 37 PageID #:1
University (â€œDefendant,â€ â€œthe Universityâ€ or â€œDePaulâ€), with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (â€œEEOCâ€) on or about November 12, 2009.
4. Dr. Holtz timely filed a Charge of Discrimination, Charge No. 21BA01376, alleging gender discrimination and retaliation, against DePaul with the EEOC on or about November 12, 2009.
5. Third Plaintiff timely filed a Charge of Discrimination, Charge No. 21BA01378, alleging gender and age discrimination and retaliation, against DePaul with the EEOC on or about November 13, 2009.
6. Plaintiffs also filed timely contact with the Illinois Department of Human Rights
(â€œIDHRâ€) on November 13, 2009.
7. First Plaintiff IDHR charge, Charge No. 2010 CF 2743, alleged gender and sexual orientation discrimination against Defendant.
8. Venue is proper in this judicial district pursuant to 28 U.S.C. Â§ 1391(b) and 42 U.S.C. Â§ 2000e-5(f)(3) because all of the unlawful employment practices alleged herein occurred in this district.
9. First Plaintiff is a gay female residing in Illinois and was an employee of Defendant within the meaning of 42 U.S.C. Â§ 2000e(f) and 775 ILCS 5/2-101.
10. Dr. Holtz is a female residing in Illinois and was an employee of Defendant within the meaning of 42 U.S.C. Â§ 2000e(f).
11. Third Plaintiff is a 69-year-old female residing in Illinois and was an employee of Defendant within the meaning of 42 U.S.C. Â§ 2000e(f).
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12. Defendant is a not-for-profit corporation properly recognized and sanctioned by the laws of the State of Illinois. At all times relevant hereto, Defendant has conducted and continues to conduct business in the State of Illinois. Defendant is engaged in an industry that affects commerce and is an employer for the purposes of 42 U.S.C. Â§ 2000e(b) and 775 ILCS 5/2-101.
13. At all relevant times, Defendant employed more than fifteen employees.
FACTS COMMON TO ALL CLAIMS
14. Plaintiffs each hold a Doctoral degree, each was a tenure track professor at DePaul, each came up for tenure during the 2008-09 academic year, and each was denied tenure.
15. Plaintiffs each received overwhelmingly positive reviews throughout their six years as tenure track professors at DePaul. Never in those six years did DePaul give Plaintiffs any indication that their performance was lacking or that they were unlikely to receive tenure.
16. Plaintiffsâ€™ departments and/or schools and colleges all determined that the Plaintiffs were entitled to be granted tenure during the 2008-09 academic year.
17. DePaulâ€™s Faculty Handbook governs the tenure and review process. The tenure procedure in place at DePaul during the 2008-09 academic year consisted of four levels of review. Tenure track applicants were generally eligible for tenure after having served a six-year â€œprobationary periodâ€ at the University or after having been credited for some of those years for service at another university.
18. Defendantâ€™s three criteria for tenure decisions are the quality of the candidateâ€™s teaching, scholarship, and service to the University. It was Defendantâ€™s policy and practice throughout Plaintiffsâ€™ probationary periods to grant tenure and promotion to candidates who met two out of the three general criteria.
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19. DePaul characterizes itself as primarily a â€œteachingâ€ university, which means it emphasizes and values the first tenure requirement, teaching, more than the second tenure requirement, scholarship.
20. Similarly, the tenure criteria of DePaulâ€™s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences specify that â€œ[i]f tension should arise between teaching and research, the college supports effective teachers who have limited research agendas . . . .â€
21. DePaul includes 12 colleges and schools, each of which is led by a Dean.
22. The tenure documents of Defendantâ€™s colleges and schools and their departments elaborate on the Universityâ€™s three requirements for tenure. The Faculty Handbook provides for a tenure process in which defined criteria are applied consistently, and in which faculty members are notified of the applicable tenure standards from the beginning of and throughout their probationary period.
23. The tenure process begins with a thorough review and recommendation by tenured faculty members in the applicantâ€™s department or program (or school, in cases where there is no department or program). The Faculty Handbook provides that â€œthe determination that an individual meets [the Universityâ€™s tenure] criteria is made primarily on the basis of guidelines promulgated by the candidateâ€™s department.â€
24. Upon receiving the recommendation of the candidateâ€™s department, school or college, the Dean of the college then assembles a College or School Personnel Committee, whose members consist of senior faculty from the college. The Committee, after reviewing the applicantâ€™s file, then makes a recommendation to the Dean, which the Dean either accepts or rejects. The Committeeâ€™s review serves the purpose of ensuring that the departmentâ€™s review is consistent with college-specific criteria and standards and consistent with University procedures.
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25. The Deanâ€™s recommendation is then forwarded to the Provost, who presides over the deliberations of the University Board on Faculty Promotion and Tenure (â€œUBPTâ€), which is made up of senior faculty members from across the University who have been elected by the Faculty Council.
26. The UBPT makes final recommendations to the president on all faculty promotion and tenure decisions, including promotion to Full Professor.
27. The UBPT is charged with ensuring that the lower levels of review of a tenure application have consistently applied University criteria. The Faculty Handbook authorizes the UBPT to conduct a substantive review of a tenure application â€œ[o]nly in cases where lower level decisions are judged to be deficient in significant respects.â€
28. Pursuant to the Faculty Handbook, the UBPT looks to the tenure applicantâ€™s home unit for guidance as to the relevant standards in the applicantâ€™s academic field, because departmental peers â€œrepresent the institutionâ€™s best expertise in the relevant academic field.â€
29. The Faculty Handbook requires the Provost to forward the UBPTâ€™s recommendation to the President of DePaul, who makes the final tenure decision.
30. Section 3.6.1 of the Faculty Handbook establishes a transparent and reasoned tenure review process. It provides that â€œ[t]he candidate shall have access to all internal documents being consideredâ€ and that â€œreports will be filed with the next higher level only when the candidate has had the opportunity to review such reports in order to respond appropriately.â€
31. The Faculty Handbook further provides that in cases of a negative decision, the President will inform any unsuccessful applicant of the reasons for the decision. An unsuccessful applicant has the opportunity to appeal the decision internally. If an applicant invokes the appeal provision of the Faculty Handbook, the Faculty Council appoints a review panel which examines
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the recommendation of the UBPT and ensures that it did not violate the applicantâ€™s academic freedom or contravene the tenure policies and procedures of the University.
32. The Faculty Handbook requires each tenure track faculty memberâ€™s department, program or school to issue performance evaluations, which must be approved by the Dean and subsequently by the Provost.
33. Section 3.2.2 of the Faculty Handbook explains that the purpose of the annual probationary review is â€œto assess progress toward promotion and tenure by evaluating performance in the context of promotion and tenure standards and to provide guidance and establish priorities for satisfying established criteria.â€ The formal reviews, therefore, are intended to give tenure track faculty members guidance about their progress towards tenure.
34. The UBPT emphasized during the 2008-09 academic year that a candidateâ€™s tenure application should include formal departmental reviews.
35. It is DePaulâ€™s practice not to renew a faculty memberâ€™s contract early on in his or her probationary period if he or she does not meet the criteria for tenure.
36. The Faculty Handbook guarantees academic freedom, asserting that professors have the right to â€œfreedom as they participate in the various forms of open inquiry and debate, as for example, . . . research and publication . . . .â€
37. The Faculty Handbook also incorporates by reference the guidelines of the American Association of University Professors (â€œAAUPâ€), which provide in part, â€œTeachers are entitled to full freedom in research and in the publication of the results . . .â€ and â€œFreedom in research is fundamental to the advancement of truth.â€
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38. With respect to tenure, the AAUP guidelines1 state, â€œThe precise terms and conditions of every appointment should be stated in writing and be in the possession of both institution and teacher before the appointment is consummated.â€
39. During the 2008-09 tenure process, the University had no explicit policy with respect to evaluation of academic publications that tenure applicants had co-authored with other professors.
40. During the 2008-09 academic year and in previous years, DePaul granted tenure to several faculty members based on co-authored works.
41. As an example, on information and belief, in 2009 DePaul granted tenure to a male faculty member who is younger than Third Plaintiff, most of whose publications were co-authored, and some of whose publications were co-authored with a female faculty member who was denied tenure.
42. DePaul Distinctions, a website on which the Office of Academic Affairs showcases the innovations, achievements and outcomes that exemplify the academic distinctiveness of DePaul University, highlights notable faculty scholarship. As of September of 2009, 19 of the 40 featured books on the website, or 47.5 percent, were co-authored or co-edited.2
43. Before it recommended the denial of Plaintiffsâ€™ tenure applications, the UBPT never indicated that it reviewed co-authored works differently than single-authored works.
44. The May 21, 2009 report of the UBPT (which was issued after Plaintiffs were interviewed by the UBPT and denied tenure) stated in part: â€œIt is recommended that an applicantâ€™s academic unit or program provide the Board with a statement regarding the conventions, within the applicable academic field . . . , for the evaluation of co-authored scholarship or other joint creative efforts.â€ The UBPT further suggested that tenure applicants
1 American Association of University Professors, 1940 Statement of Principles on Academic Freedom and Tenure
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be required to â€œprovide a written statement regarding the nature of the applicantâ€™s contribution and the significance of the applicantâ€™s contribution to the publicationâ€ and â€œprovide a written statement from at least one other co-author regarding the nature of the applicantâ€™s contribution and the significance of the applicantâ€™s contribution to the publication . . . .â€
45. In violation of the Faculty Handbook, the UBPT failed to provide Plaintiffs copies of its recommendations or the reasons for its recommendations, and Plaintiffs therefore did not have the opportunity to respond to the denials before they were communicated to the President, nor did they have the opportunity to review the recommendation prior to submitting their internal appeals. In fact, the UBPT has not provided Plaintiffs with their tenure reports to this day.
46. During the 2008-09 academic year, the UBPT recommended rejection of a disproportionate number of female tenure applicants in favor of male tenure applicants with similar or inferior qualifications. On information and belief, only 45% of the applicants for tenure and promotion to Associate Professor were female, but over 70% of the denied applicants were female. Female applicants for tenure and promotion to Associate Professor were three times more likely than male applicants to be denied tenure.
47. During the 2008-09 academic year only one white male professor was denied tenure. Unlike Plaintiffs, that professor was warned about serious deficiencies in his teaching and scholarship prior to his submission of his tenure application. Notwithstanding this warning, the University found that the professor had demonstrated no intention of altering his teaching approach. Unlike Plaintiffs, he performed adequately in only one of the three tenure performance criteria. The UBPT vote in his case was unanimous and in agreement with the lower levels of review.
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48. During the 2009-10 academic year, Provost Epp unilaterally promoted two male professors to the rank of Associate Professor with tenure despite never having implemented the tenure review process, in violation of the Faculty Handbookâ€™s requirement that â€œonly a faculty member with a tenure track appointment is eligible for tenure.â€
A. Defendantâ€™s Denial of Tenure to First Plaintiff
49. First Plaintiff served as an Assistant Professor of Womenâ€™s and Gender Studies (â€œWGSâ€) in DePaul Universityâ€™s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences (â€œLASâ€) from July of 2004 until June of 2010.
50. First Plaintiff was originally hired by DePaul in 2002 to teach Interdisciplinary Humanities at its Barat Campus, as a tenure track faculty member of Barat College of DePaul University. She served as an Assistant Professor of Interdisciplinary Humanities from July 2002 until June of 2004. Then-Associate Dean Gene Beiriger told First Plaintiffat the time of her hire that three peer-reviewed articles, or their equivalent, would be sufficient for tenure, and thatFirst Plaintiff pre-hire peer-reviewed article would count toward this requirement during the tenure review process.
51. First Plaintiff publications during the probationary period focused on feminist and queer theory, and, in particular, the work of a feminist lesbian poet, Amy Lowell.
52. First Plaintiff served as an advisor to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered (â€œLGBTâ€) student groups on campus and held a prominent role on the Board of the DePaul Lesbian/Gay/Bi/Transgender/Queer Studies Minor, of which she was a founding member. This unique program received significant national press.
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53. On information and belief, of the tenure applicants whose applications were reviewed during the 2008-09 academic year, First Plaintiff was the only professor whose professional work included research and service related to lesbian and feminist studies.
54. The Personnel Committee of WGS issued First Plaintiff formal evaluations in 2005 and
2007. In both evaluations the Committee commended First Plaintiff on her â€œstrong accomplishmentsâ€ and promise in all three areas of Teaching, Research, and Service. It further expressed confidence that First Plaintiff would â€œcontinue to progress toward Tenure and Promotion.â€
55. First Plaintiff applied for tenure and promotion to Associate Professor during the fall semester of 2008.
56. The WGS Personnel Committee voted 9-0 in favor of her tenure and promotion, applying University criteria as well as the more detailed standards of the WGS Program.
57. The WGS Programâ€™s tenure criteria require â€œan active scholarly agenda demonstrating coherence and consistency along with a commitment to research, scholarship, and/or creative activities that focus on women, gender, and feminist theories and analysis.â€
58. The WGS Program conducted a detailed assessment of First Plaintiff scholarly activities and found that she had met its criteria, writing, â€œFirst Plaintiff has established a strong record of publication. She has firmly established herself as the foremost scholar on Amy Lowell.â€ It further noted, â€œFirst Plaintiff work demonstrates increasingly sophisticated and critically inflected approaches to her work, very much in line with the interdisciplinary field of WGS.â€
59. The LAS College Personnel Committee (â€œCPCâ€) voted 4-1 in favor of First Plaintiff tenure and promotion, and the Dean concurred with the CPCâ€™s majority recommendation. In his
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letter to the UBPT, Dean Charles Suchar wrote that First Plaintiff teaching record was â€œexceptional,â€ that her scholarship had met the tenure and promotion standards set by her program and the college, and that her service record was â€œoutstanding.â€
60. The UBPT, however, recommended against tenure and promotion.
61. None of the members of the 2008-09 UBPT specialize in the same field of inquiry as First Plaintiff.
62. DePaulâ€™s President, Rev. Dennis H. Holtschneider, accepted the UBPTâ€™s recommendation and denied First Plaintiff tenure application. On information and belief, President Holtschneider did not conduct his own thorough review of the tenure application materials, but rather relied exclusively on the UBPTâ€™s recommendation.
63. It is undisputed that First Plaintiff met and exceeded the Universityâ€™s first requirement for tenure, teaching. In his denial letter, President Holtschneider admitted that First Plaintiff met the Universityâ€™s teaching standards. He wrote, â€œThe Board acknowledged that you have been judged to be an effective and engaging teacher who has amassed an exemplary record of service.â€
64. As the Dean of LAS concluded, First Plaintiff met and exceeded the Universityâ€™s second requirement for tenure, scholarship. She presented at numerous professional conferences and published two peer reviewed articles, two book chapters, two book reviews, a co-authored book chapter, and two co-edited volumes from a prestigious university press. She also had a book chapter, a head note and an edited selection in a literary anthology in press at the time she submitted her tenure materials. She had also completed a book manuscript which was in the process of being vetted for publication (this book manuscript was granted a publication contract in November of 2009).
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65. In his letter denying First Plaintiff tenure, however, President Holtschneider wrote that â€œa majority of the University Board viewed [First Plaintiff] record of scholarship as not having met the criteria for promotion and tenure.â€ He then stated â€“ inaccurately â€“ that First Plaintiff two co-edited anthologies were both products of her ongoing collaboration with her dissertation advisor, and stated, â€œit is uncertain whether you will be successful in finding a publisher for your current book.â€
66. First Plaintiff had not collaborated with her dissertation advisor since 2004, as her tenure statement and well as her former advisorâ€™s letter for her tenure file made clear.
67. As the Dean of LAS concluded, First Plaintiff met and exceeded the third requirement for tenure, service to the University. As her program recognized in its letter recommending that she be granted tenure, First Plaintiff â€œserved on numerous department committees and . . . actively participated on the LGBTQ advisory committee, served on the Women in Science Lecture Series committee, the Deanâ€™s Task Force on Advising, the Faculty Governance Council and . . . the University Faculty Council, among other committees. She is truly an outstanding citizen of the College and University.â€
68. The UBPT, during its review process, interviewed First Plaintiff. Several of the questions posed by UBPT members demonstrated ignorance about First Plaintifffield of study.
69. For example, one member asked whether it was normal for a publication to focus on a single author. First Plaintiff responded that this approach was standard within the field of literary criticism, and that indeed, many well-regarded scholars devote their entire careers to writing about a single author.
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70. Another UBPT member held up First Plaintiff curriculum vitae, pointed to several conference presentations and mocked their titles, asking First Plaintiff to justify their academic merit.
71. Other questions posed by members of the UBPT demonstrated hostility to First Plaintiff gender and/or the field of gender studies. One member asked First Plaintiff to justify the feminist recovery movement in literary studies, of which her work on Amy Lowell is a part.
72. Another memberâ€™s first question to the student representative who was reporting to the UBPT on the results of a student survey of First Plaintiff teaching was about the ratio of female to male students in WGS courses. Subsequent questions focused on the WGS Program as a whole, not on First Plaintiff teaching. On information and belief, tenure applicants who were male, heterosexual or who did not publish in the field of womenâ€™s and gender studies were not subjected to this type of inquiry.
73. The UBPTâ€™s determination was tainted by its membersâ€™ unfavorable stereotypes regarding First Plaintiff gender and sexual orientation.
74. In an attempt to justify its tenure denial recommendation, the UBPT applied new and post hoc criteria that Defendant had never provided to First Plaintiff. These new criteria were not applied consistently to all candidates for tenure.
75. The UBPT faulted First Plaintiff for having published scholarly work in collaboration with another scholar. In doing so, it ignored a detailed letter from First Plaintiff co-author explaining the nature and extent of First Plaintiffcontribution to the two co-edited volumes. It also discounted the single-authored, peer-reviewed publications that First Plaintiff had published and included in her tenure dossier.
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76. In violation of University policy and practice, the UBPT also faulted First Plaintiffbecause she had not yet found a publisher for her forthcoming book, despite the fact that First Plaintiff had not included the book in her tenure application and publication of the book was not necessary to meet the tenure criteria.
77. Neither University policy nor the criteria of the WGS Program prohibited or discouraged co-authored work.
78. At no point prior to the UBPTâ€™s tenure decision did the UBPT or the Faculty Council inform the WGS Program that its tenure criteria or guidelines were insufficient or inconsistent with University-wide standards.
79. The UBPT violated the Faculty Handbook by conducting a substantive review of First Plaintiff tenure application despite the fact that it did not identify any significant defect in the CPC decision.
80. On information and belief, the UBPT also violated the Faculty Handbook in that it failed to review the decision of the WGS Program and the decision of the CPC for â€œconsistency and fairnessâ€ by failing to compare the review of First Plaintiff tenure record to those of other tenure candidates.
81. Within the field of womenâ€™s studies, collaborative research is common and accepted. In fact, the WGS Programâ€™s criteria include a detailed definition of acceptable forms of scholarship, which include co-edited works.
82. The Modern Language Association (â€œMLAâ€), the premier professional association for literature and literary criticism, similarly values collaborative work. The 2006 â€œReport of the MLA Task Force on Evaluating Scholarship for Tenure and Promotionâ€ states that
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â€œopportunities to collaborate should be welcomed rather than treated with suspicion because of traditional prejudices or the difficulty of assigning credit.â€
83. The UBPT acted outside permissible tenure procedures in making its own determination about whether First Plaintiff co-authored works were acceptable means of scholarship. The Faculty Handbook specifies that the candidateâ€™s department or program, not the UBPT, will â€œdetermine which forms of scholarship particularly advance and communicate knowledge within a disciplinary or interdisciplinary field and how the products of scholarship will be weighed.â€
84. On August 7, 2009 First Plaintiff, through her attorney, wrote a letter to President Holtschneider in which she complained she had been discriminated against because of her gender and sexual orientation.
85. First Plaintiff appealed the tenure denial.
86. On October 14, 2009, the Tenure Review Appeal Board (â€œthe Review Boardâ€) issued a report finding that although the scope of its review was limited and it did not have the power to make a â€œproactive pronouncementâ€ regarding interpretation of conflicting provisions in the Faculty Handbook, in the case of First Plaintiff tenure application there were â€œextreme and severe conflicts in the manner in which DePaulâ€™s Faculty Handbook outlines the responsibilities of the University Promotion and Tenure Board.â€
87. The Review Board characterized the scope of its review as being limited to â€œa determination of whether there had been a violation of policy or procedure, or a limitation on academic freedom.â€ It recommended that the Faculty Council â€œexplicitly define an avenue to address any claims of alleged discrimination during the tenure and promotion process, fully consistent with all local, state, and federal anti-discrimination laws and regulations.â€
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88. Finally, the Review Board found that â€œthe failure of UBPT to communicate its reasoned justification for its decision is a serious flaw and detrimental to the transparency and fundamental fairness of the tenure and promotion process.â€
89. Upon receiving the Review Boardâ€™s report, President Holtschneider declined to reverse his prior decision to deny tenure to First Plaintiff.
90. Despite an exhaustive job search and submission of many applications, First Plaintiff has been unable to find a position comparable to the tenure track appointment she held at DePaul or to the tenured position she was denied.
B. Defendantâ€™s Denial of Tenure to Dr. Holtz
91. Dr. Holtz served as an Assistant Professor in the School of New Learning (â€œthe SNLâ€) from July of 2003 until June of 2010. The SNL is not divided into departments and therefore constituted the lowest level of review in Dr. Holtzâ€™s tenure review process.
92. Dr. Holtz was hired to engage in interdisciplinary scholarly activity and teaching, as well as online teaching.
93. The SNL Dean assured Dr. Holtz at the time of her hire and subsequently that her preprobationary work would count towards tenure.
94. During Dr. Holtzâ€™s first academic year, Dr. Luis Galarza Perez sexually harassed her on several occasions by making sexually inappropriate remarks and violating her personal space.
95. Dr. Holtz complained repeatedly to SNL Dean Susanne Dumbleton and the SNL Associate Dean, but the University failed to correct the sexual harassment. In fact, the harassment worsened, and Dr. Holtz was forced to report it to Barbara Schaffer, then-Vice President of Diversity Investigations.
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96. Ms. Schaffer confronted Dean Dumbleton about the harassment and Dean Dumbletonâ€™s failure to address it.
97. On information and belief, shortly after Dr. Holtz complained about sexual harassment to Ms. Schaffer, former Dean Dumbleton told one of Dr. Holtzâ€™s colleagues, â€œShort of hiring a hit man, I will make sure that Jennifer [Holtz] never gets tenure.â€ Dean Dumbleton reported directly to Provost Helmut Epp, who presided over the 2008-09 UBPT meetings.
98. Dr. Holtz applied for tenure and promotion to Associate Professor during the fall semester of 2008.
99. The SNL criteria identify effective scholarship as that which â€œ[e]nhances the quality of oneâ€™s thought and action,â€ â€œ[m]aintains currency within and contributes to oneâ€™s fields of interest,â€ â€œ[m]odels lifelong learning and inquiry,â€ and â€œ[e]nhances the learning-centered tenets expressed in the mission of SNL.â€
100. When Dr. Holtz first arrived at the SNL, the senior faculty within the school specifically encouraged her to engage in collaborative and interdisciplinary research. For example, SNL Associate Dean Pat Ryan told Dr. Holtz that she did not have to be the first author on a publication for it to be considered during the tenure process, emphasizing that collaborative work was the norm in interdisciplinary fields. This standard was confirmed during a May 9, 2008 workshop held to provide guidance for faculty members who were beginning the tenure process, at which Associate Vice President of Academic Affairs Dr. Raphaela Weffer stated that a candidate did not have to be the first author on a paper for that paper to be considered in a tenure application.
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101. At a May 22, 2009 meeting with the SNL Personnel Committee, which was charged with making a preliminary tenure recommendation to the tenured faculty of the school, members of the committee stated that teaching and service were more important than research.
102. Three external reviewers who worked in similar fields to Dr. Holtz contributed statements to her tenure dossier. Two of them gave positive reviews and one of them gave a neutral review with some constructive criticism. One of the external reviewers characterized Dr. Holtzâ€™s scholarship as â€œimportant and timely;â€ â€œlong-standing and impressive;â€ and â€œexpansive, notable and distinctive.â€
103. The tenured faculty of the SNL conducted a detailed assessment of Dr. Holtzâ€™s scholarly activities and concluded that Dr. Holtz had â€œsuccessfully met the criteria for promotion in all three areas upon which we assessed her work: teaching, scholarship and service.â€
104. The SNL voted 21-1 in favor of her tenure and promotion, applying University criteria as well as the more detailed standards of the SNL.
105. SNL Dean Marisa Alicea concurred with the recommendation of the tenured faculty in the SNL and recommended Dr. Holtzâ€™s tenure and promotion.
106. She concluded that Dr. Holtz had â€œdeveloped an outstanding scholarly recordâ€ and that she was â€œan accomplished scholar whose published work has earned her respect in her profession and whose work in progress and future scholarly plans hold much promise.â€
107. The UBPT, however, recommended against tenure and promotion by a vote of 6 to 1.
108. None of the members of the 2008-09 UBPT specialize in the same field of inquiry as Dr. Holtz.
109. President Holtschneider accepted the UBPTâ€™s recommendation and denied tenure to Dr. Holtz. On information and belief, President Holtschneider did not conduct his own thorough
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review of the tenure application materials, but rather relied exclusively on the UBPTâ€™s recommendation.
110. As the SNL Dean concluded, Dr. Holtz met and exceeded the Universityâ€™s first requirement for tenure, teaching. Dean Dumbleton remarked on Dr. Holtzâ€™s outstanding teaching skills in a 2007 review letter. She stated, â€œthe peer review letter, the student comments, and comments . . . by colleagues who work closely with you . . . are clear in their admiration of your dedication, your clarity, your skills at course design and your ability to meet individual students at the right level and tone.â€
111. President Holtschneiderâ€™s letter denying Dr. Holtz tenure made no mention of Dr. Holtzâ€™s performance in the area of teaching.
112. As the SNL Dean concluded, Dr. Holtz met and exceeded the Universityâ€™s second requirement for tenure, scholarship.
113. President Holtschneider cited Dr. Holtzâ€™s performance in the area of scholarship as the reason for her tenure denial.
114. President Holtschneider made no indication that the UBPT had judged the SNLâ€™s thorough evaluation of Dr. Holtzâ€™s scholarship to be deficient in any significant respect.
115. Dr. Holtz presented evidence in her tenure dossier of having engaged in significant scholarly activity even prior to her arrival at DePaul in 2003.
116. While at DePaul, Dr. Holtz presented her research at numerous conferences, published two peer-reviewed articles, co-authored a favorably-reviewed book, authored two peer-reviewed chapters, and authored a book review.
117. Moreover, at the time of her tenure application she was in the process of completing two articles, another book review and a book chapter. Before the end of the tenure process, Dr. Holtz
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had published her dissertation in monograph form and a second book review. In addition, she had a book chapter in press.
118. In 2009, the UBPT recommended promotion of male professor Kevin Downing to Full Professor, the Universityâ€™s highest rank. Dr. Downing was the co-author of the book Dr. Holtz published, and the UBPT recommended his promotion partly on the basis of that publication.
119. Individuals applying for promotion to Full Professor, such as Dr. Holtzâ€™s co-author, are generally held to higher standards in the area of scholarly activity than individuals applying for tenure and promotion to Associate Professor, such as Dr. Holtz.
120. In 2009 Defendant granted tenure to Dr. Gabriele Strohschen, based in part on the work she did in collaboration with Dr. Holtz.
121. In the 2005 formal performance evaluation of Dr. Holtz, Dean Dumbleton had commended Dr. Holtz on her â€œvery activeâ€ scholarly agenda, and mentioned in particular the writing and presentations on which she collaborated with Dr. Strohschen and Dr. Radner. She recommended her for a raise â€œfor outstanding performance.â€
122. In the 2007 formal evaluation Dean Dumbleton had again recommended Dr. Holtz for a raise â€œat the highest level,â€ commending her on her ambitious research agenda and her progress on the book she co-authored with Kevin Downing.
123. Provost Epp approved Dr. Dumbletonâ€™s assessment of Dr. Holtzâ€™s progress, and approved her reappointment and raise.
124. The UBPT did not question Dr. Downing or Dr. Strohschen about their relative contributions to these collaborative works.
125. As the SNL Dean concluded, Dr. Holtz met and exceeded the Universityâ€™s third requirement for tenure, service to the University. In a November 2008 review, Dean Alicea
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complimented Dr. Holtz for â€œcontinu[ing] to serve the College and the University through [her] work on various committees.â€ Similarly, in Dr. Holtzâ€™s April 2007 review, Dean Dumbleton stated, â€œThank you for all you do. Your work is central to the future of the college and the University.â€
126. President Holtschneiderâ€™s letter denying Dr. Holtz tenure made no mention of Dr. Holtzâ€™s performance in the area of service to the University.
127. During a February 20, 2009 interview with Dr. Holtz, the UBPT demonstrated its predisposition to deny Dr. Holtzâ€™s tenure application. Several members of the UBPT asked Dr. Holtz questions that related to matters outside the scope of the tenure criteria and the review process at the school level.
128. After Dr. Holtz answered questions about the extent of her contribution to collaborative work, two members of the UBPT repeatedly asked her about her co-authored book with Professor Downing and even demanded that she provide them an exact numerical percentage of how much she contributed to the work. Although Dr. Holtz responded that it was difficult to quantify contribution to the publication in this manner, she did her best to quantify her contribution and explain how many chapters she had personally authored.
129. At no point prior to the meeting with the UBPT did Defendant notify Dr. Holtz that she would have to provide a numerical explanation of the extent of her contribution, nor were similarly situated male professors or professors who had not complained about sexual harassment required to do so.
130. At one point, after Dr. Holtz responded to a question, a UBPT member turned to Provost Epp, who frowned and shook his head.
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131. The UBPTâ€™s determination was tainted by its membersâ€™ unfavorable stereotypes regarding Dr. Holtzâ€™s gender.
132. In an attempt to justify its tenure denial recommendation, the UBPT applied new and post hoc criteria about which Defendant never provided notice to Dr. Holtz. These new criteria were not applied consistently to all candidates for tenure.
133. The UBPT faulted Dr. Holtz for having published scholarly work in collaboration with other authors and for failing to â€œquantifyâ€ her contributions to some of her publications. It also improperly discounted work she had done at another university.
134. The UBPT exaggerated and took out of context a negative comment that was included in the report of one of the three external reviewers, and substituted its own judgment for that of the SNL and the majority of the external reviewers in assessing the quality of her scholarship.
135. Finally, the UBPT improperly dismissed as insignificant teaching and scholarly activity Dr. Holtz had done in the area of online education, despite the fact that Dr. Holtz had been specifically hired to work in that area.
136. The UBPT also ignored significant portions of Dr. Holtzâ€™s tenure dossier. For example, it appears to have disregarded her seven peer-reviewed presentations as well as her two single authored refereed publications. It also ignored all of the publications she produced while a Clinical Instructor at the University of Kansas School of Medicine.
137. In its May 28, 2010 report to the Faculty Council, the same UBPT that decided Dr. Holtzâ€™s tenure case admitted, â€œThere is arguably some ambiguity as to whether evaluation of the scholarship of a candidate for tenure is restricted to scholarship produced during a candidateâ€™s probationary years.â€
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138. At no point prior to the UBPTâ€™s tenure decision did the UBPT or the Faculty Council inform the SNL that its tenure criteria or guidelines were insufficient or inconsistent with University-wide standards.
139. On or about November 23, 2010 President Holtschneider reversed a previous tenure denial to a male professor on the basis that the professor had been assured (like Dr. Holtz) at the time of his hire that his pre-probationary work would count towards tenure, and that it consequently was not fair to the professor to discount this work for the first time during his tenure review.
140. On information and belief, the UBPT violated the Faculty Handbook in that it failed to review the decision of the SNL for â€œconsistency and fairnessâ€ by failing to compare the review of Dr. Holtzâ€™s tenure record to those of contemporary and past candidates for tenure.
141. It is common and acceptable within interdisciplinary fields to engage in collaborative research.
142. On September 29, 2009 Dr. Holtz, through her attorney, wrote a letter to President Holtschneider in which she complained she had been discriminated against because of her gender.
143. Dr. Holtz appealed the tenure denial.
144. On October 30, 2009, the Tenure Review Appeal Board (â€œthe Review Boardâ€) declined to overturn the UBPTâ€™s recommendation.
145. The Review Board found that it was unable to determine that the UBPT had violated procedure in denying Dr. Holtz tenure. It did note, however, that several aspects of the tenure procedure in the Faculty Handbook were â€œsubject to loose rather than tightly transparent procedures.â€
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146. Upon receiving the Review Boardâ€™s report President Holtschneider declined to reverse his prior decision to deny tenure to Dr. Holtz.
147. Despite an exhaustive job search and submission of many applications, Dr. Holtz has been unable to find a position comparable to the tenure track appointment she held at DePaul or to the tenured position she was denied.
C. Defendantâ€™s Denial of Tenure to Third Plaintiff
148. Third Plaintiff served as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Teacher Education of the School of Education (â€œSOEâ€) from July of 2002 until June of 2010.
149. Third Plaintiff’s teaching and research applied interdisciplinary approaches to education, including teacher professional development and the teaching of literacy.
150. Third Plaintiff’s formal performance reviews were positive throughout her six years as a tenure track professor. The Department of Teacher Educationâ€™s fourth-year review commended Third Plaintiff on her â€œsignificant number of national and international presentationsâ€ as well as her research grant and her submission of articles to peer-reviewed journals.
151. DePaulâ€™s Provost accepted the reviews and their recommendation that Third Plaintiff’s contract be renewed.
152. Third Plaintiff was granted a research leave, and therefore the Faculty Handbook would have permitted her to suspend her â€œtenure clockâ€ for a year as she continued to work on her research, teaching and service.
153. Third Plaintiff chose not to request an additional year, however, in reliance on the assurances given by the interim dean and her department chair that her record was already strong enough to warrant a grant of tenure and promotion.
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154.Third Plaintiff applied for tenure and promotion to Associate Professor during the fall semester of 2008.
155. The Personnel Committee of the Department of Teacher Education voted to grant Third Plaintiff tenure and a promotion.
156. The Personnel Committee of the SOE, after meeting with Third Plaintiff and reviewing her application, unanimously concluded that Third Plaintiff had â€œmet the expectations of the University in teaching, scholarship and service for promotion and tenure.â€
157. Subsequently, the tenured faculty of the SOE voted 18-2 in favor of Third Plaintiff’s tenure and promotion.
158. The Dean of the SOE, Dr. Marie Donovan, after conducting her own review of the lower levelsâ€™ application of tenure criteria, similarly concluded that (l) â€œThird Plaintiff has met the criteriafor tenure and promotion in the area of teaching in our Schoolâ€ (2) â€œThird Plaintiff has documented and demonstrated a consistent, productive research and scholarship agenda that meets the expectations for tenure and promotion in our School;â€ and (3) â€œShe has exceeded the service expectations for tenure and promotion in our School.â€
159. The UBPT, however, recommended against Third Plaintiff’s tenure by a vote of 5 to 1. In doing so, it failed to identify any deficiencies in the process or criteria used by the lower levels of review. It nevertheless conducted its own substantive evaluation of Third Plaintiff’s application in violation of the Faculty Handbook.
160. None of the members of the 2008-09 UBPT specialize in the same field of inquiry as Third Plaintiff.
161. President Holtschneider accepted the UBPTâ€™s recommendation and informed Third Plaintiff that her tenure application would be denied. On information and belief, President Holtschneider
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did not conduct his own thorough review of the tenure application materials, but rather relied exclusively on the UBPTâ€™s recommendation.
162. As the Dean of the SOE concluded, Third Plaintiffmet and exceeded the first requirement for tenure, teaching. In the document recommending that Third Plaintiff be granted tenure, the SOE noted that â€œThird Plaintiff [was] spoken of very highly in terms of having an energetic and passionate personality, an ability to be an effective instructor, and an ability to prepare future educators for the real world of teaching.â€ The SOE determined that â€œThird Plaintiff [had] demonstrate[d] strong teaching abilities and a sincere commitment to insuring that DePaulâ€™s students are given every opportunity to develop into effective literacy teachers.â€
163. President Holtschneiderâ€™s letter memorializing the UBPTâ€™s reasons for the tenure denial made no mention of Third Plaintiff’s teaching.
164. As the Dean of the SOE concluded, Third Plaintiff met and exceeded the second requirement for tenure, scholarship.
165. In the letter denying Third Plaintiff tenure, President Holtschneider erroneously stated that Third Plaintiff had failed to fulfill the scholarship requirement. He wrote, â€œA majority of the University Board were concerned by the preponderance of co-authored works and the inability to effectively evaluate the degree of your contributions to that work. The Boardâ€™s reservations about the proven quality and impact of your scholarship were deepened by a minority of your colleagues in the School of Education expressing concern about the level of scholarly depth and application of particular theoretical constructs.â€
166. The members of the UBPT lacked the qualifications and authority to make de novo determinations about the â€œquality and impactâ€ of Third Plaintiffâ€™s scholarship. Without such
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expertise and authority, its reliance on the reservations of two faculty members from the SOE about Third Plaintiffâ€™s theoretical approach to her research was irregular.
167. The two SOE faculty members who dissented from the SOEâ€™s tenure recommendation were literacy professors who held a different view of reading pedagogy and practices. Academic freedom allows for scholars to present the different perspectives that emerge from their research.
168. In making its own judgment about the quality and impact of Third Plaintiffâ€™s work, the UBPT disregarded the contrary finding of 21 tenured faculty members in the SOE, who, unlike the UBPT members, were experts in the field.
169. The UBPT also failed to address the fact that contrary to University policy, the numerical vote at the department level was conveyed to the SOE personnel committee.
170. The SOE Policies and Procedures explicitly provide that collaborative and co-authored work is to be considered as part of an applicantâ€™s scholarship in the tenure process:
Characteristic examples of this type of work include original scholarly work such as refereed books, book chapters, refereed journal articles and other scholarly works. Co-authored works also apply. Other evidence of scholarship may also include edited as well as co-edited collections in which the faculty member’s original work contributes a significant portion of overall work …
171. Third Plaintiffâ€™s research reflects the dialogic or social nature of learning that is dependent upon collaborative discussion, learning, and thinking together with other co-researchers. Since Third Plaintiff’s research is also interdisciplinary, she has often collaborated with colleagues, leading to a number of co-authored, collaborative publications.
172. During her time at DePaul, Third Plaintiff authored two peer-reviewed chapters, eight articles in refereed journals, three of which she was the sole author and three of which she was the lead author, three single-authored articles in edited journals, and several book reviews, Case: 1:10-cv-08175 Document #: 1 Filed: 12/24/10 Page 27 of 37 PageID #:27
among other scholarly activities. She also gave numerous presentations at peer-reviewed international, national and state conferences, all of which were peer-reviewed conferences.
173. Finally, Third Plaintiff was awarded a highly selective, competitive and prestigious two-year Spencer Grant, in which she is the Principal Investigator and author for her research on Developing Early Multiliteracies.
174. As the Dean of the SOE concluded, Third Plaintiff met and exceeded the third requirement for tenure, service to the University. In its tenure recommendation, the SOE stated that Third Plaintiff â€œreadily volunteer[ed] for service opportunity, and . . . served DePaul, the School of Education, her department, her profession, and community in a variety of capacities.â€ The SOE noted that Third Plaintiff had served on the University Research Council, the University Transition Committee, and the Professional Education Council, as well as on the SOEâ€™s Diversity Committee and Curriculum Committee and on her departmentâ€™s Curriculum Advisory Committee and Student Teacher Committee.
175. President Holtschneiderâ€™s letter memorializing the UBPTâ€™s reasons for the tenure denial made no mention of Third Plaintiffâ€™s service to the University.
176. The UBPT interviewed Third Plaintiff during its tenure deliberations and demonstrated a predisposition to deny her tenure application. Mr. Steven Resnicoff, who is male and a professor in DePaulâ€™s College of Law, asked Third Plaintiff most of the questions. Throughout his questioning his attitude was hostile and scornful.
177. He repeatedly asked her about her co-authored work and even demanded that she provide an exact numerical percentage of how much she contributed to the work. Although Third Plaintiff responded that it was difficult to quantify contribution to the publication in this manner, she did explain the nature of the collaborative effort and the extent of her contribution to the best of her
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ability. Subsequently, some of Third Plaintiff’sâ€™ co-authors submitted letters to the appeals board quantifying the amount of work they did.
178. At no point prior to the meeting with the UBPT did Defendant notify Third Plaintiff that she would have to provide a numerical explanation of the extent of her contribution, nor were similarly situated male professors or younger professors required to do so.
179. The UBPT also improperly demanded that Third Plaintiff provide the rejection rates for each of the peer-reviewed journals in which she published, even though that information is generally not publicly available, Third Plaintiffhad no notice of this requirement, and other candidates for tenure were not required to provide that information. Third Plaintiff responded that she did not have access to the rejection rates but that the journals in question were top tier and had a high rejection rate.
180. Furthermore, it is outside the scope of the UBPTâ€™s authority and competence, absent having found a violation of process below, to inquire into the quality of the journals in which Third Plaintiff published, and to question the extent of her contributions to her co-authored publications.
181. In violation of her right to academic freedom, the UBPT also questioned the merits of the field in which Third Plaintiff was hired to specialize; since arriving at DePaul she had focused on the field of literacy development (reading and writing), which evolved into a robust research agenda addressing multiliteracies.
182. The Board recommended that two younger faculty members in the SOE be tenured even though the publication record of one of the candidates was inferior to that of Third Plaintiff, and the other candidate had significantly lower teaching evaluations.
183. The SOEâ€™s Personnel Committee noted in its report that collaborative approaches to scholarship were â€œtypical in this field, and reflects [Third Plaintiff] approach to both her teaching
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and scholarship as being situated within a community of practice, and based on an understanding that knowledge is socially constructed through interaction.â€
184. Addressing the quality of her work, the Personnel Committee concluded that Third Plaintiff â€œcontinues to engage with current research . . . and is well-positioned with some of the major, internationally recognized scholars in these fields . . . .â€
185. The UBPT based its determination in part on bias against interdisciplinary and collaborative work.
186. On September 19, 2009, the Tenure Review Appeal Board (â€œthe Review Boardâ€) issued a decision in Third Plaintiff’s case. It found by a vote of two to one that the UBPT had violated the Universityâ€™s approved tenure procedures.
187. The Review Board noted that the UBPT appeared to have found no violation of procedure or other deficiency in the SOEâ€™s analysis of Third Plaintiff’s file. It also found that the UBPT seemed to have allowed its purported confusion about the extent of Third Plaintiff’s contribution to her co-authored works to define and limit the consideration of her case and â€œmay have led them to overlook the other evidence in the file that substantiated and documented her scholarly productivity . . . .â€ Accordingly, the Review Board recommended that Third Plaintiff’s tenure denial be overturned.
188. On June 10, 2009 seventeen tenured members of the SOE sent a letter to President Holtschneider to express their â€œunequivocal disagreement with the recommendation forwarded to you by the University Board on Promotion and Tenure (UBPT) to deny tenure to our colleague Third Plaintiff as well as your decision to uphold that recommendation.â€
189. They wrote, in part, â€œ[T]he UBTP has egregiously failed to evaluate Third Plaintiffâ€™s record as a teacher, scholar, and citizen of DePaul University according to the stipulated University and
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SOE criteria for tenure and promotion and one that was strongly supported at every lower level of review.â€
190. Despite an exhaustive job search and submission of many applications, Third Plaintiff has been unable to find a comparable position to the tenure track appointment she held at DePaul or to the tenured position she was denied.
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TITLE VII DISCRIMINATION BY DEFENDANT AGAINST ALL PLAINTIFFS
191. Paragraphs 1 through 190 are incorporated by reference as if fully set out herein.
192. Defendant denied Plaintiffs tenure because of their gender in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended, 42 U.S.C. Â§ 2000e et seq.
193. DePaul does not dispute that throughout their probationary periods Plaintiffs met or exceeded DePaulâ€™s tenure expectations.
194. In evaluating tenure applications, DePaul treated Plaintiffs differently than similarly situated male colleagues when it applied new and more rigorous standards to Plaintiffs than to Plaintiffsâ€™ similarly-situated male colleagues and overemphasized minor negative or neutral aspects of Plaintiffsâ€™ applications while disregarding overwhelming contrary evidence of their outstanding performance.
195. Defendant denied tenure to Plaintiffs despite the fact that they each met or exceeded at least two of the three tenure criteria. Defendant also applied new tenure criteria in violation of the Faculty Handbook and in contradiction to its practice towards similarly-situated colleagues.
TITLE VII RETALIATION BY DEFENDANT AGAINST ALL PLAINTIFFS
196. Paragraphs 1 through 195 are incorporated by reference as if fully set out herein.
197. Plaintiffs engaged in statutorily protected activities when they complained to Defendant that they had been subjected to gender discrimination.
198. Dr. Holtz engaged in statutorily protected activities when she complained to SNL and University administrators about having been subjected to sexual harassment.
199. Defendant granted tenure to similarly situated faculty who did not complain about discrimination.
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SEXUAL ORIENTATION DISCRIMINATION BY DEFENDANT AGAINST
First Plaintiff IN VIOLATION OF THE ILLINOIS HUMAN RIGHTS ACT
200. Paragraphs 1 through 199 are incorporated by reference as if fully set out herein.
201. On information and belief, the UBPT was aware of First Plaintiff sexual orientation, as evidenced by, among other things, her service record with respect to LGBT campus organizing, the creation of a minor in Lesbian/Gay/Bi/Transgender/Queer Studies, and her scholarly focus on the work on a lesbian feminist author.
202. DePaul would have granted First Plaintifftenure were it not for the UBPTâ€™s hostility toward First Plaintiff sexual orientation, the nature of her University service and her work in feminist and queer theory.
203. DePaulâ€™s denial of tenure to First Plaintiff therefore violates the non-discrimination provisions of the Illinois Human Rights Act.
RETALIATION SPECIFIC TO First Plaintiff
IN VIOLATION OF THE ILLINOIS HUMAN RIGHTS ACT
204. Paragraphs 1 through 203 are incorporated by reference as if fully set out herein.
205. First Plaintiff engaged in statutorily protected activities when she complained to Defendant on August 7, 2009 that she had been subjected to discrimination on the basis of her sexual orientation.
206. Defendant granted tenure to similarly situated employees who did not complain about discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation.
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AGE DISCRIMINATION AGAINST Third Plaintiff
IN VIOLATION OF THE AGE DISCRIMINATION IN EMPLOYMENT ACT
207. Paragraphs 1 through 206 are incorporated by reference as if fully set out herein.
208. On information and belief, the UBPT knew Third Plaintiff was older than 40 years old, and older than the applicants to whom it granted tenure during the 2008-09 year.
209. Defendant denied Third Plaintiff tenure because of her age in violation of the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, 29 U.S.C. Â§ 621 et seq.
210. DePaul treated Third Plaintiff differently than younger colleagues in the evaluation of their tenure applications when it implemented new and more rigorous standards to Third Plaintiff than to Third Plaintiff’sâ€™ younger colleagues.
RETALIATION SPECIFIC TO Third Plaintiff
IN VIOLATION OF THE AGE DISCRIMINATION IN EMPLOYMENT ACT
211. Paragraphs 1 through 210 are incorporated by reference as if fully set out herein.
212. Third Plaintiff engaged in statutorily protected activities when she complained to Defendant on September 29, 2009 that she had been subjected to discrimination on the basis of her age.
213. Defendant granted tenure to similarly situated employees who did not complain about discrimination on the basis of age.
BREACH OF CONTRACT
214. Paragraphs 1 through 213 are incorporated by reference as if fully set out herein.
215. DePaulâ€™s Faculty Handbook defines the procedures and criteria for tenure and promotion, and thereby creates the terms of employment contracts between each of the Plaintiffs and DePaul University.
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216. By accepting their appointment as tenure track faculty members at DePaul, Plaintiffs and Defendant agreed that Plaintiffsâ€™ tenure applications would be governed by the Faculty Handbookâ€™s tenure criteria and procedures, which were further elucidated by criteria specific to Plaintiffsâ€™ schools and departments, their formal performance evaluations, and verbal explanations and assurances during the probationary period.
217. The Faculty Handbook guarantees academic freedom, and thereby prohibits denial of tenure because of disagreement with faculty membersâ€™ substantive work or because of hostility to professorsâ€™ areas of research.
218. The Faculty Handbook guarantees notice of tenure standards and annual evaluations of the faculty membersâ€™ progress toward those standards.
219. Throughout their six years as tenure track professors at DePaul, DePaul never notified Plaintiffs that they were not making adequate progress toward meeting the tenure standards, that their performance was lacking, or that they were unlikely to receive tenure.
220. DePaul applied new criteria that were outside the scope of the criteria elucidated in the Faculty Handbook or otherwise explained by the criteria of Plaintiffsâ€™ schools and departments, formal performance evaluations, and verbal explanations and assurances during the probationary period.
221. Defendant refused to give Plaintiffs notice of the reasons for the UBPTâ€™s denial of their tenure, compromising their ability to respond to the UBPT report at the fourth level of review and compromising their ability to meet their burden of proof during the internal appeal.
222. Defendant questioned Plaintiffsâ€™ areas of specialization and made determinations about the quality and focus of their research that were outside the scope of the UBPT membersâ€™ expertise and authority.
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223. Defendantâ€™s denial of Plaintiffsâ€™ tenure applications resulted from breaches of the contracts between Plaintiffs and Defendant.
224. Plaintiff suffered harm to their careers, lost wages, and other consequential damages as a result of Defendantâ€™s unlawful conduct.
WHEREFORE, Plaintiffs respectfully request:
A. Reinstatement and appointment, with tenure, to the rank of Associate Professor at DePaul University;
B. Compensation for lost wages and benefits;
C. Compensation for lost future wages if Plaintiffs are not reinstated;
D. Emotional distress damages;
E. Other compensatory damages;
F. Punitive damages;
G. Attorney’s fees and costs;
H. Pre- and post-judgment interest; and
I. Such other relief as law and justice allow.
Plaintiffs request trial by jury.
Dated: December 24, 2010
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s/ Rima Kapitan
Attorney No. 6286541
Kapitan Law Office, Ltd.
300 South Wacker Drive
Chicago, IL 60606
Phone: (312) 566-9590
Fax: (312) 566-9591
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