United States District Court, S.D. Indiana, Indianapolis Division
ORDER GRANTING IN PART AND DENYING IN PART ASCENSION
HEALTH ALLIANCE'S MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT
PATRICK HANLON JUDGE
Tucker worked for Ascension Health Alliance, Inc. for eight
years. Her position was eliminated due to a company-wide
restructuring of the human resources departments. Ms. Tucker
applied for 20 other jobs but was not offered any position.
Ms. Tucker alleges this was because of her age and sex.
Ascension has filed a motion for summary judgment. For the
reasons set forth below, the motion is GRANTED in
part DENIED in part. Dkt. .
Facts and Background
Ascension has moved for summary judgment under Rule 56(a),
the Court views and recites the evidence “in the light
most favorable to the non- moving party and draw[s] all
reasonable inferences in that party's favor.”
Zerante v. DeLuca, 555 F.3d 582, 584 (7th Cir. 2009)
Tucker began working for Ascension as its Staff Development
Coordinator at St. Vincent Kokomo Hospital in 2008. Dkt.
40-1 at 5 (Tucker Dep. 10:12-16). Her position was
within the Human Resource Department's Learning and
Development Division. Id. at 15 (50:21-25). As Staff
Development Coordinator, Ms. Tucker's job
responsibilities included: overseeing licensing and
certifications; conducting orientation programs; keeping
human resource records for certain workers; and creating
online training for staff. Id. at 8-9 (22:15-26:25).
In all of Ms. Tucker's performance evaluations, Ascension
found that she either met or exceeded expectations in every
job category. See dkt. 45-2.
September 2015, Ascension informed its human resources
employees that it was restructuring the Human Resources
Department to centralize functions and outsource recruiting.
Dkt. 40-1 at 15 (Tucker Dep. 50:1-14). Ascension
notified the employees that, in conjunction with the
restructuring, it would be eliminating positions in the Human
Resources Department. Id. at 17 (58:9-20). Employees
would be given the first opportunity to apply for new
positions. Id. (60:1-5). The restructuring lasted
from 2015 to 2016. Dkt. 40-5 at 5 (Patrick Decl.
2016, Ascension posted multiple positions related to human
resources under the new structure. See dkt.
40-6. Ascension required each applicant to submit a form
application and resume for each position. Dkt. 40-5 at
4 (Patrick Decl. ¶ 20). A recruiter would review
the applications, id. (¶ 21), and then provide
the hiring decision-makers with the application materials of
the candidates best qualified for that position, id.
(¶ 22). The hiring decision-makers would then decide
which candidates were the most qualified for interviews,
id. (¶ 23), conduct interviews, id.,
and select the most qualified candidate or candidates for
each position, id. (¶ 24).
Tucker applied for twenty open positions with Ascension
during the reorganization. See dkt.
40-6. She was not invited to interview for nor
offered any position. Dkt. 40-1 at 22 (Tucker Dep.
of the company's restructuring, Ascension eliminated Ms.
Tucker's position in September 2016. See
dkt. 40-4. The week prior, Ascension informed Ms.
Tucker that she was being laid off. Dkt. 40-1 at 25
(Tucker Dep. 89:16-17).
Tucker was fifty-nine years old. Dkt. 45 at 2. Prior
to working for Ascension, Ms. Tucker had experience working
in human resources and taught the subject for several years
at a college level. Dkt. 40-1 at 12-13 (Tucker Dep.
39:15-44:20). She has a master's degree in Business
Administration and a master's degree in Public
Administration in Health Care Administration. Id. at
5 (9:13-10:11). When Ascension hired her in 2008, she was
working towards her doctorate in business administration.
complaint brings two claims against Ascension: age
discrimination in violation of the Age Discrimination in
Employment Act (“ADEA”), 29 U.S.C. § 621
et seq. (Count I); and sex discrimination in violation
of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C.
§ 2000e, et seq. (Count II). Dkt. 1.
Ascension has moved for summary judgment on both claims.
response, Ms. Tucker concedes the sex discrimination claim
(Count II). Dkt. 45 at 2 n.1. When a party fails to
delineate a claim in her brief in opposition to summary
judgment, that claim is “deemed abandoned.”
SeeMaclin v. SBC Ameritech,520 F.3d 781,
788 (7th Cir. 2008). Therefore, Ascension's motion for
summary judgment is GRANTED as to Count II.
See Franklin v. Randolph Cty. Comm'rs,
1:18-cv-01340, 2019 WL 3037181, at *4 (S.D. Ind. 2019). The
Court's analysis is thus ...