United States District Court, D. Columbia.
JOHN DANIELS, Plaintiff: Richard Jay Hackerman, Baltimore,
CHUGACH GOVERNMENT SERVICES, INC., POTOMAC JOBS CORPS CENTER,
Defendant: Attison L. Barnes, III, LEAD ATTORNEY, WILEY REIN
LLP, Washington, DC.
G. Sullivan, United States District Judge.
John Daniels (" Mr. Daniels" ) is a middle-aged man
from Liberia, West Africa. Am. Compl. ¶ 4. A permanent
resident of Maryland, Mr. Daniels worked for Defendant
Chugach Government Services (" Chugach" ) as a
Systems Administrator from 2009 until 2011. Id.
¶ 4. In the fall of 2011, Chugach reorganized and Mr.
Daniels was laid off. Id. ¶ 5. The position
held by Mr. Daniels was combined with the position held by
Mr. Daniels' middle-aged Ethiopian colleague.
Id. Mr. Daniels interviewed for the new position,
but a younger Caucasian male was hired instead. Id.
¶ 6. Mr. Daniels trained the new hire. Id.
¶ 10. After one month, the new hired was dismissed for
poor performance. Id. ¶ 11. Mr. Daniels served
as Acting Lead Systems Administrator for approximately four
months. Id. ¶ 12. Mr. Daniels was never invited
to apply for the permanent position, which was awarded to a
younger African American candidate in March 2012.
Id. ¶ 10. Based on these events, Mr. Daniels
alleges that Chugach discriminated against him based on his
national origin, age and race. Id. ¶ ¶
10-13. Chugach moves to dismiss Mr. Daniels' Amended
Complaint for failure to state a claim. Def.'s Mot.
Dismiss, Docket No. 14. Upon consideration of the motion, the
response and reply thereto, the applicable law, and the
entire record, Defendant's Motion is GRANTED in part and
DENIED in part.
Chugach Government Services
is a government contractor based in Alaska. Am. Compl. ¶
3. Mr. Daniels was employed at Chugach's Washington, D.C.
office. Id. At the time of the events alleged by Mr.
Daniels, Chugach was a wholly owned subsidiary of Chugach
Alaska Corporation, an Alaska Native Corporation created
pursuant to the terms of the Alaska Native Claim Settlement
Act (" ANCSA" ). Def. Mem. Supp., Docket No. 14 at
7. The Alaska Native Settlement Claim Act of 1971
extinguished all Native claims to Alaskan land based on
aboriginal use. Cook Inlet Region, Inc. v. Rude, 690
F.3d 1127, 1129 (9th Cir. 2012). Native Alaskans were
compensated monetarily and with title to forty million acres
of land. Id. ANCSA transferred title of the
settlement land to twelve regional corporations, including
the Chugach Alaska Corporation, and other entities created by
the Act. Id. ; see also United States
v. A. Richfield Co., 435 F.Supp. 1009, 1020-21 (D.
Alaska 1977) aff'd, 612 F.2d 1132 (9th Cir.
1980) (" The intent of Congress in the Settlement Act
was to settle the claims of Alaska Natives and to compensate
them without deciding the difficult and disputed question of
the existence and extent of aboriginal title to Alaska
Mr. Daniels' Employment at Chugach
Daniels was employed by Chugach's Washington, D.C. office
as an IT professional. Am. Compl. ¶ 4. Mr. Daniels'
employment with Chugach began in 2009 as a Systems
Administrator. Id. At this time, Mr. Daniels was in
his mid-fifties. The
Lead Systems Administrator was an Ethiopian male in his
sixties. Id. In 2011, Chugach announced a
reorganization, including the consolidation of Mr.
Daniels' position with the Lead Systems Administrator
position. Id. ¶ 5. Mr. Daniels and his
Ethiopian colleague applied for the new position, but Chugach
hired a younger Caucasian male. Id. ¶ 6. Mr.
Daniels alleges that the new hire did not possess the
relevant education or work experience requirements that were
posted in the job description. Id. ¶ 7.
asked Mr. Daniels' to work in a temporary capacity to
assist the Caucasian male's transition into the
newly-created senior IT position. Id. ¶ 10.
After one month, the new hire was dismissed from his duties
due to behavioral and performance issues. Id. ¶
11. Chugach asked Mr. Daniels to serve as Acting Senior IT
Administrator. Id. Mr. Daniels served in this
capacity from approximately November 2011 to February 2012.
Id. ¶ 12. In early March, 2012, Mr. Daniels
received a letter informing him that his term as Acting
Senior IT Administrator was over. Id. Mr. Daniels
alleges that he was not invited to apply for the permanent
position. Id. The person hired for the permanent
position was a " much younger African-American male, who
unlike Mr. Daniels or his former supervisor, had no direct
African ancestry." Id. ¶ 13. Chugach
invited Mr. Daniels to work as a Substitute Instructor, but
with few hours and only minimum wage, Mr. Daniels could not
support his family and sought work at Walmart. Id.
Mr. Daniels' Office of Federal Contract Compliance
30, 2012, Mr. Daniels filed a complaint with the Office of
Federal Contract Compliance Program (" OFCCP" ).
Id. ¶ 15. Although the OFCCP findings are not
attached to Mr. Daniels' Complaint, he alleges OFFCP
concluded that Chugach violated Executive Order 11236 by
" hiring the first Caucasian candidate over Mr. Daniels,
a more qualified candidate, when the first candidate did not
meet the minimum requirements of Senior IT
Administrator." Id.  Chugach offered Mr.
Daniels $2,287.20 in back pay, an offer rejected by Mr.
Daniels as " entirely unsatisfactory." Id.
Mr. Daniels requested a right-to-sue letter from OFCCP and
now alleges racial discrimination under Section 1981 (Count
I), national origin discrimination under Title VII (Count
II), and age discrimination under the Age Discrimination in
Employment Act (Count III). Id. ¶ ¶ 16-18.
Mr. Daniels seeks over $700,000.00 in damages, plus
pre-judgment and post-judgment interest.
STANDARD OF REVIEW
motion to dismiss under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure
12(b)(6) tests the legal sufficiency of a complaint.
Browning v. Clinton, 292 F.3d 235, 242, 352
U.S.App.D.C. 4 (D.C. Cir. 2002). The pleading must contain a
" short plain statement of the claim showing that the
pleader is entitled to relief." Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a)(2);
Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 677-78, 129 S.Ct.
1937, 173 L.Ed.2d 868 (2009). The pleading standard does not
require detailed factual allegations, but should be "
more than an unadorned, the-defendant-unlawfully-harmed-me
accusation." Id. at 678. Naked assertions
without factual enhancements or formulaic recitations of the
elements of a cause of action will not suffice. Id.
Rather, to survive a motion to dismiss, a complaint
" must contain sufficient factual matter . . . to
'state a claim to relief that is plausible on its
face.'" Id. Plausibility entails that the
plaintiff has pled factual content that is not merely
consistent with liability but allows the Court to draw a
reasonable inference that the defendant is liable for the
alleged misconduct. Id.
considering a 12(b)(6) motion, the Court should liberally
view the complaint in the plaintiff's favor, accepting
all factual allegations as true, and giving the plaintiff the
benefit of all inferences that can be drawn therefrom.
Redding v. Edwards, 569 F.Supp.2d 129, 131 (D.D.C.
2008) (citing Kowal v. MCI Communications Corp., 16
F.3d 1271, 1276, 305 U.S.App.D.C. 60 (D.C. Cir. 1994)).