The opinion of the court was delivered by: Shadur, District Judge.
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
Frank Oglesby ("Oglesby") sues his former employer, Coca-Cola
Bottling Company of Chicago/Wisconsin ("Coca-Cola"), under
42 U.S.C. § 1981 ("Section 1981"), Title VII of the Civil Rights Act
of 1964, 42 U.S.C. § 2000e to 2000e-17 ("Title VII") and the Age
Discrimination in Employment Act, 29 U.S.C. § 629-634
("ADEA").*fn1 Oglesby asserts Coca-Cola discriminated against
him on the basis of his race (black) and his age (45) by
harassing him on the job and ultimately forcing him to resign.
Coca-Cola has now moved for summary judgment under Fed.R.Civ.P.
("Rule") 56. For the reasons stated in this memorandum opinion
and order, its motion is granted.
In November 1975 Coca-Cola hired Oglesby (then 38) as an
account manager at its Alsip, Illinois division ("Alsip").
Oglesby held an associate's degree in business administration
from Kennedy-King College (1970) and had done further course work
in business, marketing and accounting at Governor's State
University without taking a degree (Oglesby Dep. [hereafter
simply "Dep."] 3-4).*fn3 In early 1979 Oglesby was promoted to
the position of route manager.
Alsip served as a sales and distribution center for Coca-Cola
soft drinks (Coca-Cola, Tab, Sprite, Fresca and Mello Yello, Dep.
42) in the southern part of Chicago and the south suburbs. Actual
sales of the products were effected by the drivers who left Alsip
in the morning with loaded trucks to serve their regular assigned
routes. Each route manager (such as Oglesby) supervised four or
five routes and reported in turn to a region manager, each of
whom supervised up to five route managers. At the top of the
pyramid was the vice president of sales.
During most of Oglesby's tenure as a route manager, Duane
Hallstrom ("Hallstrom") was vice president of sales and Ed
Jancauskas ("Jancauskas"), a white male four years Oglesby's
junior, was Oglesby's region manager (P.Int. 8(c) supp.
response). In mid-October 1982 Jancauskas was transferred to
another Coca-Cola division and Octavus Morgan ("Morgan"), a black
male 15 years Oglesby's junior, was brought in to replace him
(Morgan Dep. 81; Hallstrom Dep. 174; P.Int. 8(c) supp. response).
Morgan had been a region manager at Coca-Cola's Niles, Illinois
division immediately before the transfer (Morgan Dep. 5).
Hallstrom chose him over a white candidate because (Hallstrom
He was the better choice. He was familiar with the
territory. He was black and I served [sic — should be
"surveyed"?] the territory and I thought Morgan would
be better for the area I had served [sic].
Oglesby had a substantial history of unsatisfactory performance
before Morgan arrived on the scene at Alsip. Less than four
months after that arrival and after "numerous conversations" with
Oglesby (Morgan Dep. 81),*fn5 Morgan determined Oglesby was not
a satisfactory employee and decided to terminate him. Morgan
spoke to Hallstrom at about 8 a.m. January 25, 1983 to "bring
him on board as far as my feeling about Frank's performance"
(Morgan Dep. 83). Hallstrom backed up Morgan's decision "as far
as the termination" (Morgan Dep. 84).*fn6
Hallstrom had his secretary type up a letter of resignation for
Oglesby to sign (Hallstrom Dep. 180). He also prepared a
"statement from Frank Oglesby and his acceptance of the severance
program, his acceptance of the several packages in turn for his
resignation" (Hallstrom Dep. 181). That statement, dictated to
Hallstrom by Coca-Cola's personnel director (Hallstrom Dep.
181-82), called for:
1. Salary continuous [sic] through February 15, 1983.
2. Payment of three weeks' vacation pay which
represents my 1983 vacation.
3. Employees benefit coverage through March 31,
In addition the statement recited (the "Release"):
In exchange for the above, I hereby release Coca-Cola
Bottling Company of Chicago and all owners, officers
and employees of the Company, referred to herein from
any claim now and in the future with respect to
employee benefits, insurance, salary or any other
claim related to employment.
Events came to a head late that afternoon. Morgan called
Oglesby into Hallstrom's office at about 4 p.m. and told him his
deficiencies as an employee had led Morgan "to the conclusion at
that point that he cease his employment with the company as a
route manager" (Morgan Dep. 89). According to Morgan and
Hallstrom — who joined the meeting — Oglesby was offered the
option to "sign [the resignation and Release] or resist" (Morgan
Dep. 108). He was told if he did not sign "he would be terminated
and he had the option to determine which route he wanted to take"
(Morgan Dep. 108).
It is undisputed that there was virtually no discussion.
According to Hallstrom, Oglesby simply said, "Okay, I will
resign" (Hallstrom Dep. 179). Oglesby claims he was so enraged by
the proceedings that he was "at a complete blank" (Dep. 139). He
did not read the papers (Dep. 141):
I was in such a rage that they asked me to resign, I
just signed a bunch of papers. I just wanted to get
out of there since they asked me. I was so mad so I
don't realize what I did.
Roberson ultimately took over Oglesby's position.*fn7
1. He was required to return to the office from the
field earlier in the day than other route managers
2. He received complaints from his supervisor
(Jancauskas) that his reports were overdue (Dep. 64).
3. He was assigned a "raggedy van" to drive, while
other route managers got new vans (Dep. 65).
4. He was required at least once to drive a
delivery truck when one of his route drivers was
absent, a job "the other people didn't have to do"
5. He was told not to drink alcohol while on the
job, though his bosses occasionally drank alcohol
during working hours (Dep. 71). He stopped drinking
during work hours when asked to do so, but he felt
harassed by "the way it was put to me" (Dep. 72).
6. He was "written up" for failing to have his key
account book*fn8 up to date, though stores on his
routes were being boycotted and thus would not stock
Coca-Cola products (Dep. 75-76).*fn9
7. He was "picked on" for failing to collect a
past-due account, even though the account had not
originally been on one of his routes and had only
recently been shifted into his district (Dep. 84-85).
8. He was occasionally required by Jancauskas to
wear a driver's uniform while in the field, though
other route managers were not similarly required to
do so (Dep. 85-86).
9. He received a written complaint from Jancauskas
for allowing three drivers on the due bill*fn10 to
take their trucks out for deliveries, though he
thought he had an oral agreement with Jancauskas that
the drivers would be permitted to drive (Dep. 88).
10. He received complaints that he had "no control
over [his] men" and that his men were not doing their
jobs properly out on the street (Dep. 97), although
the boycott had made it difficult to get the stores
to stock any ...