Kansas College Sued for Gender Discrimination

September 26, 2005 (PLANSPONSOR.com) - A Wichita, Kansas college has been hit with a federal lawsuit alleging gender discrimination.

Filed by the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the suit charged that officials at Newman University discriminated against Marla Sexson, the school’s former admissions dean, because she was a woman, according to an Associated Press report.

Sexson claimed she was passed over for promotions and retaliated against for filing a discrimination complaint. She also alleges that Aidan Dunleavy, president of the Roman Catholic university, made disparaging remarks about pregnant women, including her.

Earlier, the EEOC found probable cause to believe that Newman discriminated against Sexson and Tara Morrow, former director of student life.

According to the news report, Morrow, now the senior coordinator for rural health education and services at the University of Kansas School of Medicine in Wichita reached a confidential settlement with Newman earlier this month.

“Based on prior statements the university has made in this regard, Newman University denies any wrongdoing and we are working through the legal process,” said Kelly Snedden, communications director.

When Sexson applied for promotion to vice president for enrollment management, she says another university official told her Dunleavy intended to hire a male for the post. She didn’t get the job.