Title VII Jury Trial Defense Verdict – Sizyuk v. Purdue Univ. et al. (N.D. Ind.)

2024 is off to a strong start for Stuart & Branigin partner Bill Kealey and associates Matt Humble, and Kirstie Klutzke who scored a defense verdict on January 26, 2024 following a week-long federal jury trial in Hammond, Indiana. Plaintiff alleged employment discrimination in Purdue University’s decision not to promote her to a tenured professorship in the School of Nuclear Engineering. She contended that the faculty “no” vote on her tenure candidacy was the result of one voter’s alleged discriminatory view of her. Plaintiff asserted her claim under a “cat’s paw” theory of employer liability, contending that a biased employee duped the employer into refusing her a promotion. The Stuart & Branigin team countered with evidence demonstrating that faculty members who voted on the promotion relied on their own evaluations of the research record that Plaintiff presented in her professional dossier. The trial team drew on Stuart & Branigin’s deep experience and knowledge in university law and representation of employers.

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