Transgender professor ordered reinstated with tenure at university in Oklahoma by federal court

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09/15/2021

A transgender professor who was denied a promotion more than a decade ago must be reinstated with tenure at Southeastern Oklahoma State University because the school discriminated against her, a federal court ruled this week. Rachel Tudor, who was fired from the university in 2011, won a landmark civil rights discrimination case in 2017 in which a jury awarded her more than $1 million in damages. Although she was granted tenure during the 2009-10 academic year by a faculty committee of five in a 4-1 vote, the university’s administration denied her promotion to associate professor, according to a federal ruling from three judges filed in the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals. “Given the jury verdict in favor of Dr. Tudor, it is established — and we cannot now question — that Dr. Tudor would have been granted tenure in 2009-10 absent the discrimination,” the ruling stated. “We are instead restoring Dr. Tudor to the position she would have been in had Southeastern not engaged in prohibited discrimination against her.”

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