MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
Before the Court is Plaintiff's Motion for Summary Judgment and Defendant's Motion for Remand or for Summary Judgment. Based on motions filed by the parties and responses thereto, as well as oral argument, Defendant's Motion for Summary Judgment will be granted, and both Defendant's Motion for Remand and Plaintiff's Motion for Summary Judgment will be denied.
1. General Background
In this action, brought pursuant to Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended by 42 U.S.C. § 2000e et seq. ("Title VII"), as well as the Civil Rights Act of 1991 (the "1991 Act"), as codified at 42 U.S.C. § 1981a, Plaintiff Harvey Ross alleges that the United States Postal Service ("Postal Service") discriminated against him on the basis of his race (African-American) when it failed to promote him to the position of Mail Equipment Shops technician in October 1989.
Plaintiff joined the Postal Service in 1987 as a general mechanic (grade 5) after working for 11 years at a variety of non-governmental jobs installing, repairing, and maintaining electrical and electronic systems. He received his initial training at the U.S. Navy Electrical and Electronic School, and benefited from several related, specialized courses subsequent to his initial training.
On August 25, 1989, the Mail Equipment Shops ("MES"), a section of the Postal Service, posted Vacancy Announcement No. 2077 for the Bargaining Unit position of MES technician, level C-09. The MES is charged with making mail bags, pouches, locks and keys for the Postal Service, and the MES technician is responsible for repairing and maintaining the heavy equipment to keep the operations functioning.
Plaintiff Ross and six other people submitted applications for the MES technician position. To qualify for an interview for the position, each applicant was required to achieve a passing score on the mandatory Postal Test 500 ("PT 500"). Six of the seven applicants passed the PT 500 and qualified for an interview. Plaintiff achieved the highest score on the exam. Of the six applicants, four were African-American, one was Caucasian, and one was Asian-American.
The six qualified applicants, including Plaintiff Ross, were then scheduled for individual interviews with the selecting panel, which consisted of three members: (1) Robert Black, the selecting official, who was responsible at the time for the general administration of the MES operations (African-American); (2) Audrey Simmons, a production/planning specialist who was the primary user of the heavy equipment that the MES technician would have to maintain (African-American); and (3) Terry Cox, the General Supervisor of Maintenance, who was in charge of the technical operations of the plant (Caucasian). The panel interviewed the applicants individually, and rated them on the qualification standards for the position set forth in Qualification Standard 6753a to the Postal Service EL-303 Handbook.
The selecting panel interviewed Plaintiff on October 13, 1989. By his own admission, Plaintiff was ill on the day of his interview and nervous. The panel also reviewed Plaintiff's application form, as well as the Supervisory Appraisal form completed by Plaintiff's immediate and second line supervisors: Reginald Carnegie and Steve Cohout. Plaintiff was only recommended "with reservation" by both men, and his supervisor, Reginald Carnegie, noted on the appraisal form that Plaintiff had only "fair human relations and poor attendance."
At the end of the interview process, the composite scores of each of the six applicants were as follows:
Applicant Score RACE
Arthur Taylor 179 Caucasian/American
George White 164 African/American
Kevin Perkins 152 African/American
You Yang 150 Asian/American
Harvey Ross 149 African/American
Thomas Atkins 135 African/American
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