Attorney and faculty member Alice Stewart is suing Pittsburgh, PA’s Duquesne University. Stewart claims she is the target of gender discrimination, sexual harassment, and retaliation by the university’s dean of law and constitutional law professor Ken Gormley. Gormley is a popular attorney, columnist, and author of 2010’s The Death of American Virtue, which details Bill Clinton’s many legal battles including charges of sexual harassment.
Stewart claims that she was demoted, her salary was reduced, her grant funded was compromised, and she was no longer up for tenure — all in retaliation for her 2006 Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) sexual harassment case against Gormley, which, in 2007 the EEOC determined was a “no-cause” case.
According to Pittsburgh’s Channel 4 Action News, Stewart’s lawsuit alleges that Gormley said to another faculty member, “Alice isn’t doing herself any favors by filing these complaints.”
Stewart’s attorney, Timothy Kolman, claims that there is systemic harassment and discrimination going on at Duquesne, a Catholic university. He says that although Stewart went to the priests at the university several times for help, nothing ever came of it. Regarding the details of the case, Kolman remarked, “It’s surprising, it’s disappointing, it’s astonishing, it’s arrogant.”
In an August 4, 2010 statement on the Duquesne University website, the university fully denies Stewart’s allegations and states that Duquesne is “committed to gender equity and does not tolerate sexual harassment. The University administration and the Board of Directors fully support Dean Gormley and the others targeted by Ms. Stewart’s complaint. The University will vigorously defend the lawsuit, and is confident that it will prevail.”
Stewart is suing for compensatory and punitive damages and wants her former title and position back at Duquesne, with back pay.
Update: Click here to read about more recent developments in this ongoing case.