Ousted Grammy CEO files explosive discrimination complaint
Los Angeles, Jan 22 (AFP/APP): The ousted chief of the organization behind the Grammys filed a complaint on Tuesday accusing the Recording Academy of putting her on leave after she raised concerns about sexual harassment, voting irregularites and other misconduct.
Deborah Dugan says in her 44-page complaint before the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission in Los Angeles that the Academy retaliated against her after she detailed the misconduct in December.
In her most explosive charge against the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences, Dugan says that she was asked to hire her predecessor, Neil Portnow, as a consultant despite allegations that he had raped a foreign female recording artist, “which was, upon information and belief, the real reason his contract was not renewed.”
Dugan’s sexual harassment and discrimination allegation comes just days before the Grammy Award ceremony is set to be held in Los Angeles on Sunday.
The complaint states that on December 22, she sent an email to the head of the Academy’s human resources department saying she had been sexually harassed by Joel Katz, an attorney who is general counsel to the Academy.
“The email also detailed egregious conflicts of interest, improper self-dealing by Board members and voting irregularities with respect to nominations for Grammy Awards, all made possible by the ‘boys club’ mentality and approach to governance at the Academy,” the complaint states.
It adds that after sending the email, Dugan put the Academy on notice that she planned to take legal action.
Dugan alleges that the Academy retaliated against her by putting her on leave on trumped-up charges of misconduct.
Dugan replaced Portnow last May, becoming the first woman to lead the Recording Academy.