A Tale of Two Diversity Administrators

Glenn Ricketts

Recall the case of Angela McCaskill, the Chief Diversity Officer at Gallaudet University, who got in lots and lots trouble with her employer for signing a petition in church one Sunday morning.  Moved by her pastor’s sermon, she added her name to a list of fellow worshippers who asked that the state of Maryland decide the issue of same-sex marriage via the ballot box.  Her life got extremely complicated and unpleasant as a result: she was suspended from her duties by Gallaudet’s president, subject to castigation and denunciation by some colleagues and, when her suspension was lifted, found herself demoted and her departmental budget drastically reduced.   She protested, of course, that she had signed the petition as an exercise of her rights as a private citizen.  Nothing doing, her opponents countered.  Anyone holding the position of Chief Diversity Officer needs to reflect the appropriate “diversity” values no matter where she is, and that includes when you’re off the clock.  She’s now suing her university for $16M. 

This week, another diversity administrator found herself in hot water, but with a somewhat different resolution of her case 

Resa Cooper-Morning, Coordinator of Cultural Diversity at the University of Colorado, Denver, had apparently been supplementing her $68K salary through a phone-sex web site that she had been running after hours.  Beyond that, her sexual entrepreneurship also included the operation of an “adult escort service” as well, occasionally on UCD’s time.

But although Cooper-Morning has been temporarily placed on administrative leave, she evidently won’t be losing her job.  UCD officials stressed tha, though they didn’t approve of these lurid extracurricular ventures,her private life was her own business. 

Ah, so it is.

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