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Kortyna v. Lafayette College

United States District Court, E.D. Pennsylvania

March 27, 2017

ANDREW KORTYNA, Plaintiff
v.
LAFAYETTE COLLEGE, Defendant

          MEMORANDUM

          STENGEL, J.

         Plaintiff Andrew Kortyna filed this employment discrimination and retaliation action against Lafayette College, his former employer. This is the second employment discrimination action Dr. Kortyna has filed against Lafayette. Both cases stem from proceedings involving sexual harassment complaints made against Dr. Kortyna by two female students. Here, Dr. Kortyna brings claims under Title VII, Title IX, the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”), the Family Medical Leave Act (“FMLA”), and state law for wrongful termination based on “gender stereotyping, ” disability, and/or his filing a previous employment action. Lafayette has moved to dismiss the complaint pursuant to Rule 12(b)(6) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, arguing that the claims are either precluded or fail to state a claim. For the reasons stated below, I will grant the motion in part and deny it in part.

         I. BACKGROUND[1]

         Lafayette College is a private liberal arts college in Easton, Pennsylvania that receives federal funding. Dr. Kortyna began working as a physics professor at Lafayette in September 2001, received tenure in July 2009, and was terminated on March 31, 2015.

         A. Student Accusations against Dr. Kortyna

         On September 26, 2013, student HW, a senior at Lafayette, filed a complaint with Provost Wendy Hill accusing Dr. Kortyna of sexually harassing her. On October 2, 2013, Provost Hill telephoned Dr. Kortyna to inform him that a student complaint had been filed against him.

         On October 2, 2013, student AB filed a similar complaint of sexual harassment against Dr. Kortyna. This student is allegedly a close friend of HW. On October 3, 2013, Provost Hill called Dr. Kortyna to inform him of the second complaint. Thereafter, the students amended their complaints, with the assistance of Provost Hill, to include more detail.

         On October 7, 2013, Provost Hill gave Dr. Kortyna the students' complaints. When he asked to respond to the students' complaints, Provost Hill denied his request. Provost Hill then interviewed him on October 11, 2013. At that time, she gave him a longer amended complaint by HW, which included more specific details. HW's amended complaint alleged that the plaintiff was “a man who ‘cried, ' exhibited emotion, was ‘lonely, ' ‘strange, ' ‘awkward, ' and ‘disconnected'…” HW's amended sexual harassment complaint included the following quotes:

• My impression of him was that he was lonely and disconnected from his family.
• In my mind, Andy was just a strange physics professor like all the rest, albeit a lonely one who likes to form close relationships with his students.
• [When she first] joked about not going into science… [Dr. Kortyna's] eyes tear[ed] up.
• He had a pitiful expression on his face and there were tears in his eyes.
• What had I done that could make a grown man cry on so many occasions?

See Am.Compl. ¶ 28.

         On November 6, 2013, Provost Hill informed Dr. Kortyna that she had rejected AB's complaint but not HW's complaint. Over the next two weeks, Provost Hill allegedly “attempted to force” Dr. Kortyna to agree to be dismissed from the College. Allegedly, Provost Hill indicated that Dr. Kortyna's agreement to be dismissed from the College would halt the investigations against him and would prevent him from receiving a suspension. Provost Hill allegedly refused to negotiate alternative terms, and the plaintiff ultimately rejected her proposal.

         On December 17, 2013, Provost Hill issued two investigative reports. One found possible merit in HW's accusations because Dr. Kortyna confronted HW “with intense and insistent emotional behavior.” The other report found that Dr. Kortyna did not harass AB but may have retaliated against her for filing her complaint, based on an “apology” he made to her a day or two after she filed it.

         On January 3, 2014, Professor Robert Cohn, Chair of Lafayette's Appeal and Grievance Committee, informed Dr. Kortyna that a hearing committee was being formed to address the two student complaints. On February 3, 2014, Professor Cohn informed Dr. Kortyna that the Lafayette Hearing Committee had been formed and the hearing would occur within twenty-one days. On February 12, 2014, the Lafayette Hearing Committee informed Dr. Kortyna that the hearing dates were set for March 5, 2014 and March 6, 2014.

         B. Dr. Kortyna's Mental Health Condition

         As a result of the complaints made against him, Dr. Kortyna began to experience anxiety attacks and bouts of depression. On October 4, 2013, he suffered an acute anxiety attack. His physician prescribed him anti-anxiety medication, but Dr. Kortyna continued to suffer daily anxiety attacks.

         On October 23, 2013, [2] Dr. Kortyna suffered a severe anxiety attack and was prescribed anti-depressant medication by his physician. Over the next month, Dr. Kortyna continued to have debilitating attacks, and his medication was increased.

         On November 27, 2013, Dr. Kortyna began therapy with Robert Chupella, Ph.D., a psychologist. He was eventually diagnosed with Major Depressive Disorder, Single Episode, Severe without Psychotic Features, and Panic Disorder without Agoraphobia.

         On January 31, 2014, Dr. Kortyna was evaluated by Kenneth Weiss, MD, a forensic psychiatrist, who diagnosed depression and anxiety. In his report dated February 3, 2014, Dr. Weiss “medically concluded that Plaintiff Kortyna would ‘require legal counsel to be present'” at his disciplinary hearings as a “reasonable accommodation” for his “disabilities.”

         C. The First Set of Hearings

         The first hearing on the student complaints began on March 25, 2014. Dr. Kortyna was given a faculty member to serve as his advisor/counsel during the hearing per the university's policies and procedures. Prior to this hearing, Dr. Kortyna requested that his private legal counsel be present at the hearing as an “accommodation” for his mental health condition. Lafayette denied this request, but provided other accommodations. Provost Hill allegedly added “new charges” at the start of the hearing.

         During the hearing, HW was called to testify. Dr. Kortyna's “disabilities prevented him from being able to cross-examine HW.” He reserved the right to recall her for cross-examination. On March 26, 2014, he again requested that his private legal counsel be present at the hearing. On April 1, 2014, the defendant again denied this request but offered other accommodations.[3]

         On April 2, 2014, Dr. Kortyna was admitted to the psychiatric unit at Lehigh Valley Hospital. On April 7, 2014, Dr. Weiss issued a second report which reiterated the need for Dr. Kortyna to have his attorney present at the hearings as a “reasonable accommodation” for his disability:

In Dr. Kortyna's case, he has developed a severe condition that has substantially impaired major life activities . . . To the extent that the cause of his condition is the proceedings against him, which completely blindsided him, the appropriate label is Adjustment Disorder, classified with Trauma and Stressor Related Disorders . . . With respect to the proceedings in progress, my opinion about Dr. Kortyna's fitness to undertake them is unchanged. That is, he is presently incapable of representing his interest without the presence of legal counsel.

See Am.Compl. ¶ 72.

         On April 9, 2014, Dr. Kortyna registered a complaint of unlawful disability discrimination with the Committee, asserting that the Committee unlawfully failed to accommodate him.

         D. Dr. Kortyna's First Federal Action

         On April 10, 2014, the plaintiff filed an action in this court, alleging violations of the ADA and Section 504 due to the defendant's failure to provide him with his requested “reasonable accommodation” of having his lawyer present at the hearings. These were the only employment discrimination claims he alleged. I granted the defendants' motion to dismiss the complaint, finding that the plaintiff was not legally entitled to the relief he sought. While the motion to dismiss was pending, the hearings on the student complaints were suspended. Several events related to Dr. Kortyna's claims in this second action occurred during this timeframe.

         E. Dr. Kortyna's FMLA Leave

         On April 1, 2014, Dr. Kortyna requested medical leave under the FMLA. On May 26, 2014, Dr. Chupella emailed Lisa Rex, Director of Human Resources-Employment, requesting that Dr. Kortyna be allowed to return from his FMLA leave because he was now “medically capable of doing so.” Ms. Rex allegedly never responded. On June 6, 2014, Dr. Kortyna emailed Ms. Rex and requested she respond to Dr. Chupella's email. On June 27, 2014, Dr. Kortyna emailed Ms. Rex yet again, requesting the same. Ms. Rex allegedly did not respond to either email.

         In June 2014, Patricia Lechleitner, an Investigator for the Department of Labor, began an investigation into “Defendant's mishandling of Plaintiff Kortyna's FMLA leave.” On July 31, 2014, Ms. Lechleitner instructed Lafayette to permit Dr. Kortyna to return to campus.

         On August 1, 2014, Ms. Rex emailed Dr. Kortyna a formal letter advising him that he was “restored from FMLA leave back to [his] full-time position as a Professor.” He was also advised that the “no contact” order between him and HW and AB remained in effect. Dr. Kortyna viewed this “no contact” order as retaliation for his taking FMLA leave. He filed a complaint with Ms. Rex alleging FMLA retaliation, but Ms. Rex allegedly did not respond.

         F. Post-Kortyna I Events While Hearings Were Suspended

         While the hearings were suspended and Dr. Kortyna was on FMLA leave, the College Physics department sponsored a public lecture on-campus of an alumnus on May 9, 2014. Dr. Kortyna and his two student accusers attended the lecture. Halfway through the lecture, the Physics Department Chair asked Dr. Kortyna to leave. At the end of the lecture, Dr. Kortyna stood in the front of the auditorium and told those present that he was being forced off campus.[4]

         On May 10, 2014, Dr. Kortyna received an email informing him that he was “unequivocally ‘banned' from the defendant's campus due to the events from the previous day.” On May 30, 2014, Dr. Kortyna emailed Alison Byerly, Ph.D., the President of Lafayette, requesting access to his laboratory and office. She denied his request on June 1, 2014. On July 7, 2014, Dr. Kortyna emailed Dr. Byerly, “requesting that she lift Defendant's retaliatory ban and allow him to return to campus.” She allegedly did not respond.

         After Dr. Kortyna returned from his FMLA leave, Professor Eric Ziolkowski (the new chair of the Hearing Committee) informed the plaintiff that the hearings would begin again in September. On September 1, 2014, Professors George Panichas and James Wooley met with Acting Provost Cohn to try to negotiate settlement on behalf of Dr. Kortyna. Provost Cohn-who was involved in the initial hearings-allegedly said that he did not believe the plaintiff violated the defendant's sexual harassment policy “but that [the plaintiff] should still be punished with at least a substantial suspension…because [he] cried in front of the students.” On September 3, 2014 and September 16, 2014, Dr. Kortyna again requested that his attorney be present at the hearings. On September 16, 2014, he asked for further information of other complaints HW and AB had made against other faculty members, but was again denied this information.

         On September 17, 2014, the Committee allegedly levied “new, previously-undisclosed charges” of sexual harassment and retaliation against the plaintiff, including an allegation of retaliation related to the May 9, 2014 lecture. On September 19, 2014, Dr. Kortyna objected to the new charges, but was overruled by the Committee.

         On September 19, 2016, I dismissed with prejudice Dr. Kortyna's complaint regarding his ADA claim and request for counsel at his hearing as a “reasonable accommodation.” On September 24, 2016, Dr. Kortyna again requested that he be permitted private counsel at the hearing as a “reasonable accommodation for his disabilities.” The Committee refused to provide this accommodation. However, the Committee did permit plaintiff's counsel to be on site for the hearings and even worked to accommodate the plaintiff's counsel's schedule.[5]

         G. The Continuation of the Hearings on Sexual Harassment Charges

         On September 29, 2016, the hearing recommenced. HW refused to appear to testify a second time. She had graduated from the College the previous spring. Dr. Kortyna objected to the fact that she would not be available for cross-examination. The Committee allegedly “abruptly changed the rules governing the questioning of witnesses.” The Committee also did not allow Dr. Kortyna to call himself as a witness. It also did not allow Dr. Kortyna to call his psychologist Dr. Chupella to testify “to the effect of Plaintiff' Kortyna's disabilities on actions that were deemed retaliatory by Defendant.” The hearings continued on October 7, 10, 20, 21, and 27, 2014 regarding the charges brought by both HW and AB. According to the plaintiff, “no witness provided any evidence that would support HW and AB's charges of sexual harassment and retaliation-under the standards imposed by the Faculty Handbook-against Plaintiff Kortyna.”

         H. The Hearing Committee's Report and Findings[6]

         1. Report Regarding HW

         On November 3, 2014, the Committee issued a report with its findings and recommendations regarding HW's charges, addressed to President Byerly. The Committee outlined the timeline of proceedings and the evidence it considered. The Committee found that there was no evidence that “any actual sexual contact occurred between Professor Kortyna and Ms. HW.” However, the Committee also found that Dr. Kortyna had violated the College's sexual harassment and retaliation policies regarding “hostile environment” (B.2.2.1.4), “the special relationship between faculty and student” (B2.2.2), and “intimidation and retaliation” (B.2.4.2.1).[7] The Committee based its findings on “written communications from Professor Kortyna and Ms. HW as well as documented personal interactions [that] could subjectively and reasonably have been perceived by her as unwelcome expressions of a romantic or implicitly sexual nature (viz. FH B.2.2.1), to the point that it gave rise to what she could have reasonably perceived as a ‘hostile environment […] permeated with discriminatory intimidation […and] offensiveness' to the extent of ‘interfer[ing] with [Ms. HW's] academic or work performance' (FN B.2.2.1.4).[8] The Committee considered Dr. Kortyna's “use of intimate and emotive language” in his communications with HW, along with Dr. Kortyna's testimony that he perceived HW as having “always been a little bit flirtatious” such that he “felt there was a sexual tension from very early.[9] The Committee also pointed out that certain actions by Dr. Kortyna could have been perceived by the student as “romantic” (e.g., voluntarily driving her alone sixty miles from Easton to Newark Airport, and hugging her on multiple occasions), especially given his use of “intimate” language.[10]

         The Committee further found that Dr. Kortyna “spoke and acted in ways that violated the ‘special relationship between a faculty member and a student' (FH B.2.2.2).” Id. at 10. The Committee cited evidence that HW had made it clear to Dr. Kortyna that she was uncomfortable with how he framed their teacher-student relationship as being more than an academic-professional one. The Committee also noted one instance in which Dr. Kortyna became upset with HW but then told her “he was still willing to write recommendation letters” for her. Id. at 11.

         Lastly, the Committee discussed evidence of retaliation by Dr. Kortyna against HW for filing her complaint. In an email titled “Gentlemen: discussion and free food!” in February 2014, he wrote to six other colleagues in the Physics department about the sexual harassment complaint and pending proceedings; he specifically named HW and told them that she was “currently attempting to have [him] dismissed from the College.” Id. at 12. The Committee took issue with this email because it falsely indicated that HW had proposed sanctions against him and also that this jeopardized HW's relationship with other members of the faculty of her major with whom she would have to work and by whom she would be evaluated.[11] They voiced concerns about Dr. Kortyna's breach of the confidentiality of the investigation and pending proceeding.

         The Committee also discussed the May 9th Physics Department lecture, which Dr. Kortyna attended while on FMLA leave. “As attested by multiple witnesses, and disputed by none, following [the] lecture Professor Kortyna stood near the front and exclaimed to everyone present that he was being dismissed from or ‘thrown off' or ‘kicked off' campus.” Id. at 13. The Committee considered this act, especially in light of the previous email to colleagues, to be “brazenly retaliatory.” Id. The Committee also noted that HW was present in the front rows of the auditorium in which the lecture was held.[12]

         Prior to this event, Dr. Kortyna had been advised not to have contact with HW and AB.[13] Though the Committee could not determine that Dr. Kortyna's presence at the event violated the no-contact orders in place, they expressed concern over Dr. Kortyna's judgment in attending and also moderating a Q&A after the lecture, given the circumstances.

         The Committee also cited two emails sent to HW by Dr. Kortyna's attorney, which it considered clear forms of intimidation. In one sent on January 27, 2014, David Ferleger, plaintiff's attorney in the first federal action, identified himself as the plaintiff's lawyer and requested that she meet with him “regarding [her] potential testimony.” Mr. Ferleger also “encourage[ed her] to thoughtfully consider a positive response to this invitation.” Id. at 14. The Committee considered this email to be a clear act of retaliation, intended to put HW in fear.

         On April 26, 2014, while the hearing was suspended because the plaintiff was on FMLA leave and after the first federal action regarding the plaintiff's right to have an attorney present at the hearing had been filed, Mr. Ferleger again contacted HW by email. The April email reiterated the points of the previous email and also suggested that she had “defamed” Dr. Kortyna and that there may be “impending litigation.” He advised her to contact her attorney before responding.[14] The Committee considered this email to be a clear act of retaliation and a violation of the March no-contact Order, which indicated that neither the plaintiff nor his “intermediary” shall contact HW in person or by email.

         After making its findings, the Committee recommended a two-year, unpaid suspension as a sanction and a ban from campus during this time period.[15] The Committee stated that Dr. Kortyna's lawsuit “was an appeal to the federal court system to interfere with the College process, and to insist that Professor Kortyna's outside counsel be permitted to participate in the Hearings [demonstrating] both Professor Kortyna's and Mr. Ferleger's disregard for the College Hearing Committee and process.”

         The Committee also viewed the plaintiff's “repeated…attempts during the late Spring and Summer of 2014 to file a complaint of sexual harassment against [HW and AB] to the Student Conduct Committee” as “retaliation” against those students. They indicated that Dr. Kortyna used and/or abused his FMLA leave privileges by “subvert[ing] and complicat[ing] the Defendant's investigation” while also trying to institute new proceedings against the students through the filing of his own sexual harassment complaints against them.

         2. Report Regarding AB

         On November 19, 2014, the Committee issued a report with its findings and recommendations regarding AB, again addressed to President Byerly. The Committee outlined the timeline of proceedings and the evidence it considered. The Committee found that “the preponderance of the evidence indicates that Professor Kortyna violated [the College's sexual harassment retaliation policy] in multiple ways and in multiple instances” in violation of Faculty Handbook Appendix B.2.2.1 and B.2.4.2.1.[16] While the Committee found AB's sexual harassment complaint to be meritless, it also found the complaint was filed in good faith. Id. at 6-7.

         The Committee described several incidents in which it appears Dr. Kortyna was acting in retaliation for AB's filing her complaint. The first occurred on October 4, 2013, the day she filed the complaint. Dr. Kortyna's sought out AB in person and, while crying, apologized to her. He then told her that he was “probably going to get fired for this.”[17] After hearing Dr. Kortyna's testimony on the incident, the Committee viewed it as one meant to provoke guilt in AB. The Committee noted that it did have such an effect. AB wrote Provost Hill on the night of October 4, 2013 saying that “she felt distraught and guilty and considered telling Professor Kortyna ‘it was okay and not to worry about what happened.'” Id. at 8. The Committee also took issue with the fact that Dr. Kortyna contacted AB after being explicitly instructed not to do so by Provost Hill on October 3, 2013. Id.

         The second incident was the May 9th lecture, during which Dr. Kortyna stood up in an auditorium of students, “announced that he was being thrown off campus, and then stormed out of the hall.” Id. at 10-14. AB was present at this lecture and left the event “crying.” She indicated that other faculty members associated the event with her and expressed implied disapproval towards her. The Committee cited to evidence, which supports her interpretation of events, and viewed this May 9th incident as retaliatory.

         Next, the Committee discussed two emails sent by Dr. Kortyna's attorney after AB had filed her charge against him. Id. at 14-17. Though Dr. Kortyna claims he did not ask his lawyer to send them, both emails indicate that Dr. Kortyna's lawyer was doing so as part of his representation of Dr. Kortyna in his first federal action. The first email sent on January 27, 2014 requested that AB meet with the attorney to discuss her potential testimony at the hearing on her harassment complaint.

         The second email was sent on June 30, 2014, after the hearing had commenced and then been suspended, and while Dr. Kortyna was on FMLA leave. It was sent after the Associate Director of Public Safety James Meyer had read aloud the “Prohibition from Contact Notice” to Dr. Kortyna, informing him that neither he nor his agents should contact AB. The email warned: “Please refrain from repeating your accusations [to other faculty members]. You are at risk of being held responsible for doing so.” The email also stated that “[her] accusation of sexual harassment was false” and that “the Provost did not accept it for forwarding for a hearing.” AB did not understand the basis for the email. The email “completely panicked” her. The Committee noted that this email was sent on the night that Provost Hill was stepping down from her position; they considered this timing (especially considering its reference to the Provost) to “exacerbate[] the extremely intimidating effect that this message must have had on Ms. AB.”[18]

         The Committee then discussed at length Dr. Kortyna's attempts during late Spring and Summer of 2014, while the hearing on complaints against him was suspended, to file sexual harassment complaints against AB and HW. The Committee explained that Dr. Kortyna made a complaint to the Student Conduct Committee. He called for the two students' permanent expulsion from the College because they had filed sexual harassment complaints against him.[19] He attached confidential documents related to the proceedings on the students' sexual harassment charges against him to his SCC complaints against AB and HW.

         On May 14, 2014, Dr. Kortyna sent a memo to Dean D'Agostino, Dean McLoughlin, Mr. Greg Meyer, and Professor Jennifer Kelly asking that the SCC proceedings against the two students be started “immediately.” In a follow-up email on May 22, 2014, Dr. Kortyna requested “verification that the complaint [i.e., the SCC complaint he had tried to file through those same recipients six days earlier] has been transmitted to [AB and HW].” On May 23, 2014, Dr. Kortyna emailed Dean McLoughlin that he was “await[ing] verification that this complaint has been transmitted to [AB and HW].” Id. at 17-18. The Committee noted how the transmission of Dr. Kortyna's SCC complaints to AB and HW appeared to be another way for him to subvert the “no contact” order with the students. It found these actions to be retaliatory, especially considering Dr. Kortyna's testimony that he was “angry” about the May 9thincident at the lecture.

         Lastly, the Committee outlined several interactions Dr. Kortyna had with persons related to AB involving disparaging remarks. AB's supervisor at a local coffee shop testified that Dr. Kortyna had made unsolicited disparaging remarks to him about AB's grades during the early summer of 2014. The Committee noted how Dr. Kortyna's attorney contacted AB's roommate during the 2013-14 school year, requesting information about AB's complaints. The roommate testified, in light of this conversation with Dr. Kortyna's attorney: “[I] realized that I did not know the whole story. And I felt like I was being unfair to not continue the relationship I'd had with Andy […] So I went to see how he was doing…He was very emotionally hurt by it.” Id. at 21. In April, Dr. Kortyna's attorney again contacted AB's roommate to “relate an update about the trial.” Id. at 22. After the May 9th incident, Dr. Kortyna had also emailed the roommate and indicated that AB was the one trying to get him removed. In another email exchange, he told the roommate “AB is trying to use you to have me dismissed from the college.” Id.

         AB also testified that other physics majors and professors made remarks, which could be construed as related to her complaints against Dr. Kortyna. Id. Another female physics major told her Dr. Kortyna “jokingly” remarked that he hoped the other female student would not file a harassment complaint against him. Id. That same student told AB (via a Facebook message) that Dr. Kortyna told her that “AB and HW have been spreading lies about me.” Id. The Committee also cited statements made by close friends of HW and AB that Dr. Kortyna told them they “would regret filing [their complaints]” and that “he would come after [them] personally with a lawsuit.” Id.

         The Committee noted that AB considered transferring to another university in Spring 2013 and has trouble trusting other professors as a result of her interactions with Dr. Kortyna.

         Because the Committee considered these incidents to be “grav[e] and persisten[t]” acts of retaliation and intimidation in violation of Faculty Handbook Appendix B.2.1 and B.2.4.2.1, the Committee recommended that Dr. Kortyna be “permanently separated from the College, effective immediately.” Id. at 23-24.

         I. The Hearing Review Committee's Findings

         Dr. Kortyna objected to the Committee's findings and recommendations. He appealed for review of its reports by a Hearing Review Committee, per the College's prescribed procedures. Dr. Kortyna submitted a list of procedural errors to the Review Committee on both reports.[20]

         On November 26, 2014, the Hearing Review Committee issued its report related to HW to President Byerly. See Defendant's Motion to Dismiss, Doc. No. 22, Ex. 7 (filed under seal). The Hearing Review Committee found that Dr. Kortyna's inability to cross-examine HW in violation of Faculty Handbook B.3.10 was immaterial and other changes in the procedure regarding calling witnesses also did not affect the outcome of the hearing.[21] The Review Committee dismissed Dr. Kortyna's claim that the Committee's consideration of acts of retaliation without new formal charges against him being filed was improper, explaining that requiring a separate charge for each retaliatory act would cause “an endless cycle of investigations.” Id. at 3. The Review Committee agreed with Dr. Kortyna that the evidence of his “outburst” at the May 9th lecture was non-germane evidence because he was given permission in October 2013 to attend the lecture and his remarks at the event were not directed at anyone specifically. Id. at 3.

         The Review Committee agreed, to some extent, that the sanctions against Dr. Kortyna as to HW were too harsh and not consistent with the factual findings. It recommended similar sanctions but reduced the amount of time on suspension and recommended Dr. Kortyna not be banned from campus during the suspension. Id. at 3-4.

         On December 17, 2014, the Hearing Review Committee issued its report regarding AB's case to President Byerly. See Defendant's Motion to Dismiss, Doc. No. 22, Ex. 8 (filed under seal). The Review Committee offered the same observations about the hearing, as it explained in HW's report, regarding procedural errors. However, unlike the report on HW, it found that the “sanction of separation from the College…is consistent with the factual findings of the [Hearing Committee.]” Id. at 5.

         Overall, the Review Committee ultimately recommended that the two-year recommended suspension for HW's charges should be reduced to six months but also upheld the Committee's recommendation to terminate Dr. Kortyna based on actions taken towards ...


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