By Joe Marusak CHARLOTTE, NC — A former administrator at Central Piedmont Community College sued the Charlotte-based school this week, claiming she and 28 other employees were fired or forced out because they’re older than 40.
CPCC officials dispute the claims by Carolyn “Quincy” Foil White, a 58-year-old former CPCC associate vice president.
“The college is aware of the lawsuit,” CPCC spokesman Jeff Lowrance said in a statement to the Observer. “The college categorically refutes the allegations contained in the complaint and will defend itself vigorously in court.”
White said in the lawsuit that she always received stellar job performance ratings before she was fired in 2018.
She said she was told her termination was part of a “reduction of force,” according to her lawsuit filed by Charlotte lawyer Josh Van Kampen in Mecklenburg County Civil Superior Court.
Yet her firing occurred “against the backdrop of many other older employees, particularly older female employees, also suddenly becoming expendable and unnecessary” after CPCC hired Kandi Deitemeyer as president in 2017.
Long-tenured CPCC employees were shown “little respect or gratitude,” and “worker morale suffered,” White said in her lawsuit.
Twenty women over age 40 were among those fired or forced out, according to the lawsuit.
White “is dumbfounded” by the terminations, Van Kampen told the Observer.
The employees included “several of the more senior staff who helped make CPCC a crown jewel for our city,” he said. “We are very concerned that age and/or sex were factors in who was selected.”
White requested a jury trial and wants the court to order CPCC to hire her back in her same position.