The opinion of the court was delivered by: RICHARD LEON, District Judge
*fn1 The Court will grant plaintiff's "Motion for Substitution
of Party" [Dkt. #11]. Pursuant to Fed.R.Civ.P. 25(d)(1), the
Court automatically substitutes current Secretary of State
Condoleezza Rice for her predecessor, former Secretary of State
MEMORANDUM OPINION and ORDER
This matter is before the Court on consideration of defendant's
motion to dismiss or, in the alternative, for summary judgment.
Having considered defendant's motion, plaintiff's opposition, and
the entire record of the case, the Court will grant the motion in
part, and deny the motion in part without prejudice. In addition,
the Court will order plaintiff to submit a more definite
Plaintiff, "an American, black, female citizen" from
California, was an employee of the American Embassy in Vienna,
Austria from May 1996 through January 2000. Compl., ¶ 2.
Plaintiff entered into a personal services contract with the
United States Department of State ("State Department") effective
May 13, 1996. Def.'s Mot., Ex. 6 (Contract No. SOAU990-96-P-0034). According to the contract,
plaintiff was to serve as an Administrative Assistant for the
United States delegation to the Organization for Security and
Cooperation in Europe ("USOSCE") for annual compensation of
$21,344. Id. The term of the contract was one year, and the
parties renewed the contract in 1997 and 1998.*fn2 See id.
(Amendment of Solicitation/Modification of Contract, Nos. M0180
The USOSCE Executive Office found that the delegation lacked
sufficient administrative resources to manage funds, track
movements of contract staff, administer contracts, or handle
complex personnel matters. Def's Mot., Ex. 8 (DeSoto Aff.) at 5.
Consequently, it established a "mission staffing unit" within the
USOSCE, headed by a Foreign Service Officer to whom the
Administrative Assistant, plaintiff, would report. Id., Ex. 7
(Request for USOSCE Program Personnel Position and Proposed
Position Description), Ex. 8 at 3, 5-6. In light of this
organizational change, the work requirements of the
Administrative Assistant were revised somewhat. Id., Ex. 8 at
6. Plaintiff allegedly opposed the restructuring plan, and
actively resisted its implementation. Id. at 7. Evidently,
plaintiff considered the revised work requirements a demotion to
a purely clerical job.*fn3 See Compl., ¶ 16(c).
Plaintiff alleges that she endured "hostile work environment,
harassment, and racial and gender discrimination" under Jeffrey Hovenier, who
became her supervisor in April 1999. Compl., ¶ 16(c). Under Oscar
DeSoto, who became her supervisor in December 1999, plaintiff
alleges that her work environment "changed drastically." Id.
For the alleged harassment and discrimination suffered under
Hovenier's supervision, she states that she filed a formal
complaint of discrimination with the Embassy Personnel Officer on
December 19, 1999. Id., ¶ 6. Approximately one month later, she
alleges that DeSoto demoted her to a purely clerical position on
January 14, 2000 and placed her on probation, solely on the basis
of her race and gender. Id., ¶¶ 6, 16(c). She further alleges
that, barely two weeks later, on January 24, 2000, DeSoto fired
her.*fn4 Id., ¶¶ 6, 16(c), 17(4); Def.'s Mot., Ex. 10
(Amendment of Solicitation/Modification of Contract, No. M0005,
effective January 25, 2000, and supporting memoranda).
Plaintiff challenged her termination by filing a complaint with
the State Department's Office of Equal Employment Opportunity and
Civil Rights on March 3, 2000.*fn5 Compl., ¶ 7; Def.'s Mot.,
Ex. 1 (Formal Complaint of Discrimination and attachment).
Although the agency allegedly suggested a desire to settle the
case after its initial investigation, plaintiff stated that the
State Department issued its Final Agency Decision in November 2002 upholding the termination. Compl., ¶¶
8-10. Plaintiff appealed the agency's decision to the Equal
Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC") in December 2002.
Id., ¶ 11. On May 13, 2004, the EEOC affirmed the State
Department's decision, and in June 2004 denied plaintiff's
request for reconsideration. Id., ¶¶ 13-14 & Ex. B (EEOC
Decision), D (Denial of Request for Reconsideration).
Plaintiff brings this action under Title VII of the Civil
Rights Act of 1964 as amended, 42 U.S.C. § 2000e et seq., and
under the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended, 29 U.S.C. § 791
et seq. Compl., ¶ 41. She alleges that defendant terminated her
employment unlawfully on the bases of her race, color, gender,
and national origin, and in reprisal for having filed a complaint
of discrimination. Id., ¶ 44. In addition to these
discrimination claims, plaintiff brings tort claims for "the
publication of defamatory statements, . . . damage to her
reputation, same, mortification, and emotional
distress."*fn6 Id., ¶ 47.
A complaint should not be dismissed for failure to state a
claim unless the plaintiff can prove no set of facts in support
of his claim that would entitle him to relief. Conley v.
Gibson, 355 U.S. 41, 45-46 (1957). The ruling on a motion under
Rule 12(b)(6) does not test a plaintiff's likelihood of success
on the merits; rather, it tests whether a plaintiff properly has
stated a claim. See Scheuer v. Rhodes, 416 U.S. 232, 236 (1974). The factual allegations of the complaint are presumed
to be true and are construed liberally in plaintiff's favor.
See, e.g., United States v. Phillip Morris, Inc.,
116 F. Supp. 2d 131, 135 (D.D.C. 2001). The Court is not obligated, however,
to draw factual inferences that are not supported by the facts
alleged. Kowal v. MCI Communications Corp., 16 F.3d 1271, 1276
(D.C. Cir. 1994). Because ...