Seven AEs Sue Clear Channel For Discrimination In New Orleans
August 22, 2013 at 3:59 AM (PT)
While CLEAR CHANNEL's NEW ORLEANS cluster continues to defend a suit by former account executive PRIXIE MONTGOMERY and has settled two others, the company now faces a racial discrimination suit by MONTGOMERY and six other employees in the same court, U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of LOUISIANA.
WIL WATSON, GARY WATSON, AVE GAINES, DARNETTA MAHAFFY-NELSON, DINAH CAMPBELL, and BRANDIN CAMPBELL, along with MONTGOMERY, have sued CLEAR CHANNEL alleging that its sales compensation methods were discriminatory.
The plaintiffs say that they all had earned six figure compensations -- "In 2008, for example, WIL WATSON earned about $205,000, GARY WATSON earned $164,000, AVE GREEN earned $52,000, BRANDIN CAMPBELL earned $90,000, DINAH CAMPBELL earned $92,000 and PRIXIE MONTGOMERY earned $130,000 in salary and commissions" -- but that after the company changed its plan and redistributed accounts in the wake of the economic downturn, "whether intentional or negligent, African-American account executives were disparately, and negatively, impacted, to their severe economic detriment as compared to their Caucasian counterparts.
In 2010 WIL WATSON earned about $139,000, GARY WATSON earned $146,000, AVE GREEN earned $22,000, BRANDIN CAMPBELL earned $69,000, DINAH CAMPBELL earned $58,000 and PRIXIE MONTGOMERY earned $63,000. Overall, African-American Account Executives lost on average more than 40% of their 2008 income in 2008-9. On information and belief Caucasian Account Executives lost no more that about 15% of their 2008 income, on average, during the same period of time."
The plaintiffs say that they complained about the "race-conscious account shifts" within a month of the changes to Market Manager DICK LEWIS, Director of Sales MIKE SCOTT, and Regional VP MARK KOPPELMAN, all white, but the problems were not addressed.