College Settles Sex-Harassment Lawsuit Against President

May 01, 2006

The Nevada System of Higher Education has agreed to pay $10,000 to a former employee of Truckee Meadows Community College to settle a sexual-harassment lawsuit against college’s president, Philip M. Ringle.

Anne-Louise Bennett, a former executive director of institutional advancement and foundation at the college, sued Mr. Ringle, the college, and the Nevada higher-education system in November 2005. The suit asserted that Mr. Ringle had created a hostile work environment after Ms. Bennett refused his invitation to have dinner at his home and join him in his hot tub while his wife was out of town.

Mr. Ringle has denied the allegations, and James E. Rogers, chancellor of the Nevada system, said in a memorandum last week that the payment is not an admission of wrongdoing.

“There is absolutely no truth to the allegations made against me,” Mr. Ringle said in a written statement sent to The Chronicle. “As a trustee of the public’s faith and resources, I know that it is important to resolve matters expediently. I am, however, saddened that the legal system has arrived at a place where serious charges must be resolved through financial considerations rather than in the purer pursuit of justice.”

For more on the settlement, see an article in the Reno Gazette-Journal.