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Andrades v. Holder

United States District Court, District of Columbia

April 16, 2013

HIRAM ANDRADES, pro se, Plaintiff,
v.
ERIC HOLDER, Attorney General, Defendant

HIRAM ANDRADES, Plaintiff, Pro se, Centreville, VA.

For ERIC HIMPTON HOLDER, JR., Attorney General, Defendant: Jeremy S. Simon, LEAD ATTORNEY, U.S. ATTORNEY'S OFFICE, Washington, DC.

OPINION

Page 12

Royce C. Lamberth, Chief United States District Judge.

MEMORANDUM OPINION

Plaintiff, a Black Hispanic male of Puerto Rican heritage, applied for and was denied a position by a White Hispanic male of Puerto Rican heritage. The position was ultimately given to a White, non-Hispanic male. Plaintiff brought this action under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, alleging, inter alia, discrimination on the basis of race and national origin. See Am. Compl., Count 1, ECF No. 10. Defendant has moved for summary judgment,

Page 13

Def.'s Mot., ECF No. 55, and the Court now grants the motion.

I. BACKGROUND

A. Factual Background[1]

1. Plaintiff

Plaintiff Hiram Andrades is an employee of the Bureau of Alchohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (" ATF" ), an agency within the United States Department of Justice. Def.'s Statement ¶ 1, ECF No. 55; Pl.'s Statement 1, ECF No. 57. Mr. Andrades is a Black Hispanic male of Puerto Rican heritage. Def.'s Statement ¶ 1; Pl.'s Statement 1; Am. Compl. ¶ 3, ECF No. 10.

2. The Vacancy

In January 2008, Mr. Andrades was working as a Program Manager-a non-supervisory position at the GS-14 level-in ATF's Washington, D.C., headquarters when a vacancy was announced for a Supervisory Criminal Investigator position. Def.'s Statement ¶ ¶ 3-4; Pl.'s Statement 2; see also Vacancy Announcement 2, Ex. 1 to Decl. of Edgar A. Domenech, ECF No. 55-1. The advertised position was at the same GS grade level as the Program Manager position Mr. Andrades held at the time. See Vacancy Announcement 2; Def.'s Statement ¶ 1; Pl.'s Statement 1. However, the vacant position involved supervisory duties which Mr. Andrades's position did not. See Pl.'s Statement 2, 6, 9 ¶ 8; Def.'s Statement ¶ ¶ 33-34. At ATF, occupying such a supervisory position for two years is a necessary prerequisite for advancing to the GS-15 level. Pl.'s Opp'n 14; Def.'s Mem. 12-13.

The vacancy announcement indicated that ATF could fill the position either by the noncompetitive reassignment of an ATF employee already at the GS-14 level or by competitive promotion of a GS-13 employee. See Vacancy Announcement 2; see also Def.'s Statement ¶ ¶ 5-6; Pl.'s Statement 1, 4. GS-13 candidates interested in a competitive promotion would have to take a test offered by an Assessment Center that measured a variety of " competencies," and would be selected based on these assessments. Def.'s Statement ¶ 6; Pl.'s Statement 1. GS-14 candidates interested in a non-competitive transfer did not have to take this test.

3. Mr. Andrades's Application

Mr. Andrades applied to be considered for the position as a non-competitive candidate. Def.'s Statement ¶ 17; Pl.'s Statement 3. He was not selected for the position. Def.'s Statement ¶ 32; Pl.'s Statement 8 ¶ 5.

4. Other Applicants For the Position

Only one GS-14 candidate other than Mr. Andrades applied for the position as a non-competitive reassignment-a White, non-Hispanic male. Def.'s Statement ¶ ¶ 15, 18. He was also not selected. Three GS-13 candidates applied for the position through the competitive process, including the candidate who ultimately received the offer-also a White, non-Hispanic male. Def.'s Statement ¶ ¶ 14-15, 27, 32; Pl.'s Statement 8 ¶ 5.

5. The Decision

Edgar Domenech, an ATF employee, had authority to decide whether to hire through the competitive or non-competitive process and which " competencies" tested by the Assessment Center were most ...


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