United States District Court, N.D. Indiana, Hammond Division
GLORIA D. TERRY, Plaintiff,
GARY COMMUNITY SCHOOL CORPORATION, Defendant.
OPINION AND ORDER
E. MARTIN, UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
matter is before the Court on a Motion for Summary Judgment
[DE 94], filed by Defendant Gary Community School Corporation
on October 20, 2017. For the following reasons, the motion is
April 4, 2015, Plaintiff Gloria D. Terry filed her Complaint.
On May 5, 2015, Plaintiff filed a First Amended Complaint,
and on August 17, 2015, Plaintiff filed a Second Amended
Complaint. In her Second Amended Complaint, Plaintiff alleges
that she was discriminated against on the basis of her gender
when she was transferred to assistant principal positions
after the school where she served as principal was closed and
when she was not appointed to fill an available principal
position that instead went to a male candidate. The Second
Amended Complaint includes a discrimination claim under Title
VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, an unequal pay claim
under the Equal Pay Act, equal protection and due process
claims under the Fourth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution
pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983, and a claim under the
Indiana Open Door Act. On June 7, 2016, District Court Judge
Theresa L. Springmann granted Plaintiff's Partial Motion
for Summary Judgment and entered judgment in her favor on the
Open Door Act claim. On October 20, 2017, Defendant filed the
instant Motion for Summary Judgment on the remaining claims.
Plaintiff filed a response on November 16, 2017, and
Defendant filed a reply on November 30, 2017.
parties filed forms of consent to have this case assigned to
a United States Magistrate Judge to conduct all further
proceedings and to order the entry of a final judgment in
this case. Therefore, this Court has jurisdiction to decide
this case pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636©.
Summary Judgment Standard
Federal Rules of Civil Procedure mandate that motions for
summary judgment be granted “if the movant shows that
there is no genuine dispute as to any material fact and the
movant is entitled to judgment as a matter of law.”
Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(a). Rule 56 further requires the entry of
summary judgment, after adequate time for discovery, against
a party “who fails to make a showing sufficient to
establish the existence of an element essential to that
party's case, and on which that party will bear the
burden of proof at trial.” Celotex Corp. v.
Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 322 (1986) (citing Fed.R.Civ.P.
56(c)). “[S]ummary judgment is appropriate - in fact,
is mandated - where there are no disputed issues of material
fact and the movant must prevail as a matter of law. In other
words, the record must reveal that no reasonable jury could
find for the non-moving party.” Dempsey v.
Atchison, Topeka, & Santa Fe Ry. Co., 16 F.3d 832,
836 (7th Cir. 1994) (citations and quotations omitted).
seeking summary judgment bears the initial responsibility of
informing the court of the basis for its motion and
identifying those portions of the pleadings, depositions,
answers to interrogatories, and admissions on file, together
with the affidavits, if any, that it believes demonstrate the
absence of a genuine issue of material fact. See
Celotex, 477 U.S. at 323; Fed.R.Civ.P. 56©. The
moving party may discharge its initial responsibility by
simply “‘showing' - that is, pointing out to
the district court - that there is an absence of evidence to
support the nonmoving party's case.”
Celotex, 477 U.S. at 325. When the nonmoving party
would have the burden of proof at trial, the moving party is
not required to support its motion with affidavits or other
similar materials negating the opponent's claim.
Id. at 323, 325; Green v. Whiteco Indus.,
Inc., 17 F.3d 199, 201 n.3 (7th Cir. 1994);
Fitzpatrick v. Catholic Bishop of Chicago, 916 F.2d
1254, 1256 (7th Cir. 1990). However, the moving party, if it
chooses, may support its motion for summary judgment with
affidavits or other materials, and, if the moving party has
“produced sufficient evidence to support a conclusion
that there are no genuine issues for trial, ” then the
burden shifts to the nonmoving party to show that an issue of
material fact exists. Becker v. Tenenbaum-Hill
Assoc., 914 F.2d 107, 110-111 (7th Cir. 1990) (citations
omitted); see also Hong v. Children's Mem'l
Hosp., 993 F.2d 1257, 1261 (7th Cir. 1993).
properly supported motion for summary judgment is made, the
non-moving party cannot resist the motion and withstand
summary judgment by merely resting on its pleadings.
See Fed. R. Civ. P. 56(e); Donovan v. City of
Milwaukee, 17 F.3d 944, 947 (7th Cir. 1994). Rule 56(e)
provides that “[i]f a party fails to properly support
an assertion of fact or fails to properly address another
party's assertion of fact as required by Rule 56(c), the
court may . . . consider the fact undisputed for purposes of
the motion [or] grant summary judgment if the motion and
supporting materials - including the facts considered
undisputed - show that the movant is entitled to it . . .
.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(e)(2), (3); see also Anderson v.
Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 248-50 (1986). Thus,
to demonstrate a genuine issue of fact, the nonmoving party
must “do more than simply show that there is some
metaphysical doubt as to the material facts, ” but must
“come forward with ‘specific facts showing that
there is a genuine issue for trial.'”
Matsushita Elec. Indus. Co. v. Zenith Radio Corp.,
475 U.S. 574, 586-87 (1986) (quoting Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(e))
(emphasis in original).
viewing the facts presented on a motion for summary judgment,
a court must construe all facts in a light most favorable to
the non-moving party and draw all legitimate inferences in
favor of that party. See Liberty Lobby, 477 U.S. at
255; Srail v. Vill. of Lisle, 588 F.3d 940, 948 (7th
Cir. 2009); NLFC, Inc. v. Devcom Mid-Am., Inc., 45
F.3d 231, 234 (7th Cir. 1995). A court's role is not to
evaluate the weight of the evidence, to judge the credibility
of witnesses, or to determine the truth of the matter, but
instead to determine whether there is a genuine issue of
triable fact. See Liberty Lobby, 477 U.S. at 249-50.
was employed by Defendant school district from 1980 until her
retirement in 2015. From approximately 2002 through mid-2014,
she served as the principal of Brunswick Elementary School.
The district saw steep declines in enrollment which led
Defendant to close several schools, including Brunswick,
which was closed at the end of the 2013-2014 school year.
Teachers were laid off, and principals were assigned to other
administrative roles within the school district. Plaintiff
applied for an open position as principal at Marquette
Elementary School, as did another female
candidate. Sheldon Cain had served as assistant
principal and acting principal at Marquette, and was the
interim principal there during the 2013-2014 school year.
school district selected Mr. Cain to serve as Marquette's
principal for the 2014-2015 school year. Meanwhile, Defendant
transferred Plaintiff to assistant principal positions, first
at Jefferson Elementary School, then at Marquette, where she
served under Mr. Cain. Plaintiff's salary and benefits
did not decrease as a result of either transfer, with her
salary remaining at $84, 308, the same amount she had been
paid when she was principal at Brunswick. However, Mr. Cain
was paid $85, 986 during his time as principal. A district
representative testified that, had she been appointed
principal at Marquette, Plaintiff would have received the
higher salary. Salaries had been frozen since 2009, due to
the ongoing financial crisis in the school district.
about October 13, 2014, Plaintiff filed a Charge of
Discrimination with the Equal Employment Opportunity
Commission, which in turn issued a Dismissal and Notice of
Rights on January 27, 2015. On February 25, 2015, Defendant
sent Plaintiff a non-renewal notice which indicated that the
school district did not intend to renew her contract as an
administrator, leaving her the option to retire or to return
to the classroom as a teacher. To preserve her benefits,
Plaintiff elected to retire at the end of the 2014-2015
school year. Mr. Cain had also received non-renewal notices
in June 2006 and January 2012. In January 2015, Mr. Cain