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HIGBEE v. BILLINGTON

February 24, 2003

JOAN F. HIGBEE, PLAINTIFF,
V.
JAMES H. BILLINGTON, DEFENDANT.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: John M. Facciola, United States Magistrate Judge

  MEMORANDUM OPINION
This case was referred to me by Judge Sullivan for all purposes including trial pursuant to LCvR 73.1(a). I herein resolve Defendant's Motion for Summary Judgment. For the reasons set forth below, defendant's motion for summary judgment will be denied.

FACTS

There is no genuine issue as to the following facts:

1. Plaintiff, who began working at the Library of Congress in 1976, was detailed twice to the Library of Congress' ("the Library") Rare Book and Special Collections Division ("the Division") in March and May 1991.
2. Plaintiff was permanently reassigned to the Division as a GS-12 Reference Librarian in September 1991.
3. She and two other men, Clark Evans and Robert Shields, encumbered the position of Reference Librarian/Specialist, GS-12. All three had the same position description.
4. On January 14, 1993, plaintiff filed a Complaint of Discrimination indicating that the alleged bases of discrimination were gender and sexual harassment. When asked the date on which the alleged discrimination took place, she answered August 11, 1992, and a "previous and continuing pattern." Defendant's Motion for Summary Judgment ("Def.'s Mot."), Exhibit 6. In the section where she was asked to explain how she was discriminated against, she wrote:
As a woman I have been harassed through silent treatment, intimidating and accusatory memoranda, trumped up charges, denial of meaningful recognition for professional accomplishments and responsibilities and withholding of work assignments designated by my position description. I have been subjected to a hostel [sic] work environment. Harassment continues.

Id.

5. On May 30, 1995, Dr. Larry Sullivan, Chief of the Division, provided the three Reference Specialists — plaintiff, Evans, and Shields — with performance appraisals. He rated Evans as "outstanding," resulting in a quality step increase worth $1,445 per annum. Plaintiff's Opposition to Defendant's Motion for Summary Judgment ("P.'s Opp."), Exhibit 16. Dr. Sullivan rated plaintiff two steps lower, as "satisfactory," and she received no quality step increase. P.'s Opp., Exhibit 20.

6. Dr. Sullivan left the Library in 1995.

7. On November 24, 1995, T. Dean Flowers, EEO Officer at the Equal Employment Opportunity Complaints Office, concluded that plaintiff suffered disparate treatment and was also subjected to a hostile work environment because of her gender. P.'s Opp., Exhibit 32, at 1, 7. That decision was subsequently reversed by the Director of Dispute Resolution and Equal Employment Opportunity. P.'s Opp., at 9 & n. 4.
8. In 1998, the Library reorganized the Division and in a reduction in force, plaintiff and Shields were reassigned to other divisions within ...

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