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Ohio State, employee sued for alleged racism in firing of white employee

Ohio State and a current employee face a lawsuit alleging that a former employee was fired in part because of her supervisor’s discrimination against white people. | Credit: Lantern file photo

A former Ohio State employee filed a lawsuit against the university and her former supervisor Monday, claiming that her May 2017 firing was, in part, a result of her supervisor’s discrimination against white people.

Mary J. Faure, who served as the Director of the Engineering Technical Communications Programs from 2011 to 2017, claims in her suit that she was fired by Monica Cox, the Chair of the department of Engineering Education since 2016, citing performance issues despite Faure never being disciplined prior to Cox’s hiring. Faure is seeking reinstatement, pay, damages and legal fees.

According to the filing, Cox told Faure during their first formal meeting that she would like to give Faure insight into her background and how it shaped her as a black woman.

“I despise white people,” Cox said, according to the document.

When Faure said that Cox’s comments were “racist” and “unprofessional,” Cox supposedly said that if Faure ever repeated what she had said, Cox would deny it.

The complaint says Faure reported Cox’s comments to human resources consistently, but she was told by the director that she did not want to file a formal complaint because it will “come back on you.”

Faure said that she was fired because she opposed Cox’s behavior and openly discussed her concerns with colleagues.

University spokesman Ben Johnson said that Ohio State officials are “aware of the lawsuit” and are in the process of reviewing it.

Faure and her attorneys did not respond for comment at the time of publication.

4 comments

  1. Blacks can’t be racists. At least that’s what I’m always told.

    • Ha. Right. It’s clear that anyone can be racist. This black woman was her supervisor, said she despises white people then fires her white employee over “performance issues” yet only have her “outstanding” or “exceeds expectations” in her annual reviews? She never had any discussions regarding poor performance, no “personal improvement plan”, no warning? Definitely racism. And illegal.

  2. Former student of FEH

    As an alumnus of FEH program who also happens to be from minority group, I am deeply concerned that office politics and diversity illusion has taken over Hitchcock Hall over the past few years. FEH, as well as FE, not only taught us about fundamentals of engineering but also prepared us for future challenges from major-specific classes and our eventual career. It also helps other engineering department by giving students a personal, early view of engineering discipline and let them make a second chance of choices about their career field, in case they find out engineering is not best match for their interest. I had classmates who switched majors after FE and eventually graduated from medical school. Therefore, it is critical that FEH and FE programs maintain their standard and focus on preparing students for entrance to their major, rather than conforming to the diversity illusion. Diversity is not FE’s/FEH’s strength; preparing qualified freshman students for entrance to engineering majors and eventual work field is the strength of OSU engineering education. Sadly, based on information from newsletter and fresh graduates, OSU COE is under constant corrosion by the diversity illusion, especially coming to selection of new faculty members. Faculty’s racial or ethnic should never be a factor in determining their teaching skills and affirmative action hurts minority students in the long term. Therefore, I would urge my fellow alumni to carefully consider further donations to our alma mater before such issues are addressed.
    I am grateful for the training, guidance, and inspiration that I received from Professor Abrams, Professor Clingan, Professor Freuler, Professor Harper, Professor Schlosser, and many TAs who have since graduated. I sincerely hope we can keep the integrity of FE&FEH programs for future students.

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