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Education

College of DuPage reaches settlement with former employees

Thomas Glaser, Lynn Sapyta filed federal lawsuit against COD

College of DuPage
College of DuPage

The College of DuPage Board of Trustees on June 22 approved a settlement agreement with two former employees who filed a federal lawsuit against the college in 2015, contending their firings were politically motivated.

Thomas Glaser, treasurer and former senior vice president of administration, and Lynn Sapyta, controller and former assistant vice president of financial affairs, filed a suit against the college, former interim President Joseph Collins and former Board of Trustees Chairwoman Kathy Hamilton. As part of the agreement, Glaser and Sapyta agreed to dismiss the lawsuit with prejudice, meaning it cannot be refiled.

“The college is pleased that this litigation has ended," COD officials said in a statement. "The result is clearly in the best interests of the college.”

Separate agreements were reached with Collins and Hamilton. Shelly Kulwin, one of the attorneys for Glaser and Sapyta, said he could not comment on whether the two will receive any compensation through the agreements with Collins and Hamilton.

The College of DuPage will not compensate them as part of its settlement agreement. The two were fired in September 2015 after an internal investment audit uncovered several areas of noncompliance with board policy, including exceeding limits for specific types of investments deemed as potentially volatile.

An administrative law judge for the Illinois Department of Employment Security last year ruled Sapyta did not intentionally violate college policy. Glaser and Sapyta contended in the suit they were fired for campaigning against Hamilton's handpicked "Clean Slate" candidates.

The settlement with COD releases the college from any claims of unlawful discrimination or retaliation, violations of the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, violation of any of the college's personnel policies or handbooks, or "any tort or violations of any existing public policy or common law."

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