Penn State

She worked at Penn State for more than 24 years. Now she is suing for age discrimination

Old Main on the Penn State campus on Wednesday, June 20, 2018.
Old Main on the Penn State campus on Wednesday, June 20, 2018. Centre Daily Times, file

A former Penn State employee filed a lawsuit against the university alleging age discrimination.

Carol Walker, 61, was hired as a staff assistant in 1992. According to the lawsuit, she was one of the oldest employees in the university’s Central Office of Human Resources.

Senior Compensation and Benefits Director Gregory Stoner and Employee Relations Officer Reese Doughty terminated Walker in connection with a layoff in June 2016.

Walker worked at the university for 24 years and four months at the time of her termination. Her retirement benefits, including lifetime health care, was scheduled to vest after 25 years of employment.

“The university discriminated against plaintiff by reason of her age and its stated reason for the termination of plaintiff’s employment was pretextual,” the lawsuit said.

Walker filed a discrimination charge with the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission in September 2016. The commission notified Walker of her right to file the lawsuit, which she did on July 11.

Walker is requesting damages in excess of $50,000, punitive damages, front and back pay, benefits, reinstatement and other relief that is deemed appropriate.

Penn State spokeswoman Lisa Powers said the university would not comment on pending litigation.

Walker did not respond to a voicemail seeking comment.