$5M award upheld in white professor’s discrimination case
ST. LOUIS – A Missouri appeals court has ruled that a white professor at a predominantly black university in St. Louis was fired “because of the color of her skin.”
A three-judge panel of the Missouri Court of Appeals on Tuesday affirmed a 2015 jury verdict that awarded nearly $5 million to Beverly Wilkins, a former professor at Harris-Stowe State University.
Wilkins claimed in her lawsuit that she was repeatedly passed over for promotions during nine years of employment before being fired in 2010.
The university blamed state budget cuts, but the lawsuit says two black professors with less tenure than Wilkins kept their jobs.
It’s unclear if the university will appeal. The university says in a statement that it has not yet had an opportunity to review the ruling with its lawyers.