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Former Recording Academy President Files Discrimination Complaint

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Former Recording Academy CEO and President Deborah Dugan, and her lawyers, spent Tuesday trading accusations with the Academy, in the wake of Dugan’s complaint.  It was filed with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).  It accuses the organization behind the Grammy Awards of gender discrimination, and sexual harassment.

Dugan’s complaint alleges, among other things, that the Recording Academy engaged in “egregious conflicts of interest, improper self-dealing by Board members, voting irregularities, with respect to nominations for Grammy Awards and other misconduct.”

The complaint further alleges that, the Academy, “unlawfully retaliated against Ms. Dugan by placing her on administrative leave (only after she indicated her intent to commence legal action and refused to settle her claims on terms dictated by the Academy), threatening Ms. Dugan with termination and publishing false and defamatory statements about Ms. Dugan to the media.”

Dugan’s lawyers, one of whom is Douglas H. Wigdor (who represents 20 women, who accuse Harvey Weinstein of sexual misconduct), have compared the Recording Academy’s response to the embattled film mogul, by attempting to “impugn the character of Deborah Dugan [in] a transparent effort to shift the focus away from its own unlawful activity.”

In response to the the EEOC complaint, the Recording Academy hit back.  The RA claimed that Dugan “never raised these grave allegations until a week after legal claims were made against her personally by a female employee who alleged Ms. Dugan had created a ‘toxic and intolerable’ work environment and engaged in ‘abusive and bullying conduct.’”

Dugan’s attorneys have responded with a followup statement.  It calls the Academy’s claim – that she didn’t raise concerns, prior to the accusations against her – “completely false.”

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