had sexually harassed these female employees.
Plaintiff contends that in retaliation for reporting the
allegations of sexual harassment, on January 11, 1994, Anderson
provided plaintiff with an unfavorable compensation package for
the upcoming year.*fn3 Plaintiff found the 1994 compensation
plan to be unrealistic in comparison to her 1993 compensation
plan, resulting in a strong likelihood of a decrease in her total
compensation for 1994.
On January 19, 1994, plaintiff sent a memorandum to Anderson,
advising him that she believed he provided her with an
unfavorable 1994 compensation package in retaliation for her
reporting the sexual harassment. In addition, plaintiff submitted
a counter-proposal for a 1994 compensation package.
Anderson responded to plaintiff's memorandum by handwriting the
word "rejected" on the first page of her memorandum and
initialing it. Although Anderson never further discussed
plaintiff's counter-proposal with her, on January 19, 1994,
Anderson sent plaintiff a memorandum advising her that the claims
of retaliation were "bogus" and she was "off to a rocky start for
1994". Following this encounter and continuing throughout the
remainder of her employment, plaintiff alleges that Anderson
treated plaintiff in an extremely hostile, rude and harassing
manner by screaming at plaintiff, slamming doors in her face,
subjecting her to unjustifiably harsh and unwarranted criticism
and deliberately and irreparably undermining her relationships
with her subordinates. Plaintiff further alleges that after she
reported the sexual harassment allegations to Anderson, his
overall treatment of her became hostile in terms of her entire
In May of 1994, Beasley purchased WDAS from Unity. Following
this purchase, plaintiff, Anderson and Collins remained employed
at WDAS in their same capacities. In addition, according to
plaintiff, after the sale, Anderson began reporting to Simon T,
the president of Beasley. At two separate meeting, plaintiff
allegedly complained to Simon T about Anderson's harassing and
discriminatory treatment of her and the failure to properly
investigate and remedy the situation.*fn4 Following these
meetings, plaintiff asserts that Beasley failed to take action
against Anderson or remedy the alleged harassment and
On July 15, 1994, Anderson sent plaintiff a written warning for
extending the probationary period of an account executive.
Plaintiff had extended the probationary period of an employee
under her supervision. She had done so on the belief that the
employee was defiant and insubordinate. Anderson disagreed and
did not support plaintiff's decision to extend the employee's
probationary period. Plaintiff believed that Anderson did not
support her decision and issued the warning to further undermine
plaintiff's authority with her staff. This letter was the only
reprimand issued to plaintiff during her employment at WDAS.
On January 6, 1995, plaintiff was terminated from her
employment at WDAS. Plaintiff alleges Anderson advised her that
the LSM position was being eliminated and she was not in
Beasley's future plans.
Further, plaintiff was told that her LSM position was being
eliminated as part of Beasley's new business plan to create a
General Sales Manager ("GSM") position to oversee both local and
national sales, instead of having a local and a national sales
manager. Beasley offered plaintiff the opportunity to interview
for the new GSM position or to take a demotion as a
non-management account executive. Plaintiff declined to interview
for the new position because, according to her, she should have
been offered the new position without the requirement of an
interview.*fn5 In addition, plaintiff did not consider the offer
of a position as an account executive to be a true offer of
employment because she believed there were no openings at the
time for an account executive. After taking some time off,
plaintiff requested a severance package from Beasley. Beasley
denied the request and plaintiff never returned to work.
On May 17, 1995, plaintiff filed a charge against Beasley with
the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC"), which
charge was cross-filed with the Pennsylvania Human Relations
Commission ("PHRC"). On June 11, 1997, the EEOC issued to
plaintiff a Notice of Right to Sue. On September 5, 1997,
plaintiff commenced the instant action against Beasley.*fn6
II. LEGAL STANDARD
Summary judgment is appropriate if the moving party can "show
that there is no genuine issue as to any material fact and the
moving party is entitled to judgment as a matter of law."
Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(c). When ruling on a motion for summary judgment,
the Court must view the evidence in the light most favorable to
the non-movant. Matsushita Elec. Indus. Co., Ltd. v. Zenith
Radio Corp., 475 U.S. 574, 587, 106 S.Ct. 1348, 89 L.Ed.2d 538
(1986). The Court must accept the non-movant's version of the
facts as true, and resolve conflicts in the non-movant's favor.
Big Apple BMW, Inc. v. BMW of North America, Inc.,
974 F.2d 1358, 1363 (3d Cir. 1992), cert. denied, 507 U.S. 912, 113
S.Ct. 1262, 122 L.Ed.2d 659 (1993).
The moving party bears the initial burden of demonstrating the
absence of genuine issues of material fact. See Celotex Corp. v.
Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 322-23, 106 S.Ct. 2548, 91 L.Ed.2d 265
(1986). Once the movant has done so, however, the nonmoving party
cannot rest on its pleadings. See Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(e). Rather,
the nonmovant must then "make a showing sufficient to establish
the existence of every element essential to his case, based on
the affidavits or by depositions and admissions on file." Harter
v. GAF Corp., 967 F.2d 846, 852 (3d Cir. 1992); see also
Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 255, 106 S.Ct.
2505, 91 L.Ed.2d 202 (1986).
A. Plaintiff's Retaliation Claims.
Plaintiff alleges that Anderson retaliated against her
following her report of the allegations of sexual harassment
against Collins by: 1) giving her an unfavorable compensation
package; 2) subjecting her to retaliatory harassment by creating
a hostile working environment;*fn7 3) giving
her a negative job reference after her separation from employment
at WDAS; and 4) discharging her.
Title VII provides in pertinent part:
It shall be an unlawful employment practice for an
employer to discriminate against any of his employees
. . . because [the employee] has opposed any practice
made an unlawful employment practice by this
subchapter, or because [the employee] has made a
charge, testified or assisted, or participated in any
manner in an investigation, proceeding, or hearing
under this subchapter.
42 U.S.C. § 2000e-3. Under Title VII, a plaintiff who relies upon
indirect or circumstantial evidence enjoys the benefit of the
Burdine-McDonnell Douglas burden shifting mode of analysis.
First, the plaintiff must establish a prima facie case. To
establish a prima facie case of discriminatory retaliation under
Title VII, a plaintiff must demonstrate that: 1) she engaged in
activity protected by Title VII; 2) the employer took an adverse
employment action against her; and 3) there was a causal
connection between her participation in the protected activity
and the adverse employment action. Robinson v. Pittsburgh,
120 F.3d 1286, 1299 (3d Cir. 1997) (citing Nelson v. Upsala
College, 51 F.3d 383, 386 (3d Cir. 1995)). Once the plaintiff
establishes a prima facie case, the defendant must state a
legitimate, nondiscriminatory reason for the adverse employment
action. See Olson v. General Elec. Astrospace, 101 F.3d 947,
951 (3d Cir. 1996). If the defendant does so, the plaintiff must
then meet his burden of persuasion by proving that the
defendant's proffered reasons are not the "true reasons" for its
decision, but instead are merely a pretext for discrimination.
1. Plaintiff's first two claims of retaliation are barred by
Title VII's Statute of Limitations.
a) EEOC filing requirements.