Retaliation; Faculty & Staff; Conflicts of Interest; Retaliation; Sex Discrimination; Ethics; Discrimination, Accommodation, & Diversity
Simpson v. Vanderbilt Univ. (6th Cir. May 22, 2017)
Order affirming the district court’s grant of summary judgment to Vanderbilt University. Plaintiff, a former faculty member at Vanderbilt's School of Medicine, was terminated for founding and running a private consulting corporation while continuing to work at Vanderbilt in violation of the University’s conflict-of-interest policy. She filed a sex discrimination suit against the University, claiming that male employees who engaged in outside consulting were not terminated, that Vanderbilt only took issue with her consultation work after she complained of gender discrimination, and that the University’s investigation and subsequent termination of her employment were retaliatory. The district court granted summary judgment to Vanderbilt on Plaintiff’s claims for failure to identify a similarly-situated male colleague and failure to make a prima facie showing of sex discrimination. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit affirmed.