Jay Holland speaks to Baltimore Sun, WBAL regarding school board discrimination

August 3, 2018

Reports obtained by both The Baltimore Sun and WBAL 11 News allege that some members of the Howard County school board discriminated against three former top-level employees, creating a hostile work environment. Joseph Greenwald & Laake principal Jay Holland is representing the three alleged victims of the discriminatory and homophobic behavior.

Holland spoke to both the Sun and WBAL regarding the reports, which followed the former Howard County schools superintendent Renee Foose’s resignation last year. The reports found that when Foose resigned, three of her top-level deputies; Elizabeth Grace Chesney, Timothy Thornburg and John White; were refused appointments, barred from meetings and sent to smaller offices.

In the reports, human rights investigator Cheryl Brower wrote that there was sufficient cause to believe that the three employees were targeted for supporting Foose and for being gay, in the cases of both Chesney and Thornburg.

“Some of it is shocking, but the conduct and behavior was shocking,” Holland told WBAL in an on-screen interview. “Two of these individuals were discriminated against based upon their sexual orientation, and all three of these individuals were discriminated against based upon their political opinion.”

While the Howard County Board of Education has argued against the allegations, the three former employees are standing behind their stories.

“These reports are merely a vindication of what they say happened to them,” Holland told WBAL. “They were singled out.”

The three employees filed complaints with the county Office of Human Rights last year, and when the investigation concluded, they withdrew their cases to explore court action.

“We will decide shortly whether to file a lawsuit,” Holland told the Sun.

To read the Baltimore Sun article, click here. To view the WBAL video, click here.

Jay Holland is a principal in JGL’s Civil Litigation Group, and the chair of the firm’s Labor, Employment and Qui Tam Whistleblower practice. He is a renowned employment and qui tam litigator known for taking on tough cases and achieving exceptional results.