Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Joe Wilson, Jr v. U.S. Department of Transportation

January 4, 2011

JOE WILSON, JR., PLAINTIFF,
v.
U.S. DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION, ET AL., DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Rosemary M. Collyer United States District Judge

MEMORANDUM OPINION

Joe Wilson, proceeding pro se, brought a fourteen count Complaint against the Department of Transportation and nine individuals. Mr. Wilson has stated claims against the Secretary of Transportation as follows: (1) a claim for race and age discrimination based on a December 2007 denial of promotion and (2) a claim for retaliation based on his manager's decision to charge him with leave without pay from August 31 to September 3, 2009.*fn1 As explained below, all other defendants and all other claims will be dismissed.

I. FACTS

Mr. Wilson brought suit against the Department of Transportation and the following nine individuals employed at various offices within the Federal Highway Administration ("FHWA"): Morten Sorensen, Director of Financial Services at the Office of the Chief Financial Officer ("OCFO"); Margo Sheridan, Deputy Chief Financial Officer at OCFO; Albert "Tom" Park, former Chief Financial Officer at OCFO; Elissa Konove, current Chief Financial Officer at OCFO; Patricia Toole, FHWA Human Resources Director; Allen Masuda, FHWA Office of Civil Rights Associate Administrator; Jeff Paniati, FHWA Executive Director; Patricia Prosperi, FHWA Administrator of Administration; and Marylou Nicholson, Management Assistant at FHWA.

The Complaint is replete with vague allegations. For example, the Complaint alleges:

48. DEFAMATION. This complaint and all the suffering that lead up to it could have been averted long ago. . . . As a solution, Plaintiff proposed diversity, tolerance, ethics, and leadership training for Morten Sorensen and an apology for this inexplicable behavior. What Plaintiff received was a written reprimand. . . .

50. HOSTILE WORK ENVIRONMENT. A hostile work environment is not a single action. It may begin as a single action and from there is becomes a pattern of events. Here is a brief roll of what makes up this hostile work environment: The intimidation of the staff.

The extraordinary closeness of management [ ] working on this situation with no positive results, only wasted taxpayer money and more hostility.

The exorbitant number of denied promotions from personal motives and grudges.

The proactive involvement of OCC*fn2 in non-EEO cases that provides heart and confidence to management and intimidation to employees.

The excessive number of near violent eruptions in OCFO.

Lou Nicholson spying and intimidating.

The Competitive Sourcing/BPR*fn3 initiative that targeted only certain individuals - over 50, handicapped, minorities. Inexplicable Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) activity.

Compl. [Dkt. # 1] ¶ 48 & 50.

Despite such vague allegations, it can be discerned from the Complaint that Mr. Wilson has been employed as an accountant with the FHWA since 2003. He started at the grade level GS-9, was promoted to GS-11 in 2005 and was promoted to GS-12 in 2006. He alleges that he is entitled to promotion on a non-competitive basis and that despite being recommended for, and eligible for, promotion since 2006, Defendants have failed to promote him to grade GS-13. Compl. ¶ 5. He claims that in December of 2007, he was required to take a "last minute test with no notice covering matters that have never been within [his] job responsibilities." Id. ¶ 53.*fn4

On December 18, 2007, Mr. Wilson contacted an EEO counselor and claimed that he was not promoted due to race and age discrimination; Mr. Wilson is a an African-American and he was 52 years old in December of 2007. Defs.' Mot. to Dismiss [Dkt. # 6], Ex. 8 (EEO Counselor's Report); id, Ex. 11 (EEO Investigation Report). On January 22, 2008, FHWA sent Mr. Wilson a notice of his right to file a discrimination complaint. Id., Ex. 9 (Notice). On January 30, 2008, Mr. Wilson filed a formal complaint, and the Department of Transportation's Office of Civil Rights ("DOT OCR") accepted Mr. Wilson's claim for investigation. Id., Ex. 10 (Letter from DOT OCR).

On August 29, 2009, Mr. Wilson again contacted an EEO counselor to file a complaint. He alleged that the agency charged him with leave without pay from August 31, 2009 to September 3, 2009, and that this was done in retaliation for his prior complaint of discrimination. He also alleged a hostile work environment, as a co-worker (Deera Herron) told Mr. Wilson that she had overheard management make derogatory remarks about him. Id., Ex. 19 (EEO Counselor's Report). On October 2, 2009, Mr. Wilson filed a formal charge with the DOT OCR. Id., Ex. 23 (Complaint). DOT OCR dismissed the charge for failure to state a claim, noting that the allegations did not demonstrate severe or pervasive conduct that actually affected any term or condition of employment. Id.

On March 24, 2010, Mr. Wilson filed this lawsuit. Then, on April 6, 2010, an EEOC Administrative Judge dismissed his 2008 charge of failure to promote due to race and age discrimination for the reason that the 2008 charge was pending in this suit. Id., Ex. 29 (EEOC Dismissal Notice). The instant Complaint alleges fourteen Counts:

Count I -- Violation of EEOC Regulations at 29 C.F.R. §§ 1614.103, .106(a), & .107(a)(1);

Count II -- Conspiracy to violate civil rights under 42 U.S.C. § 1985;

Count III -- Negligent failure to prevent conspiracy to violate civil rights under 42 U.S.C. § 1986;

Count IV -- Violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, 42 U.S.C. ยงยง 2000e -- 2000h-6 based on the pre-2008 failure ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.