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SIMMONS v. DEPARTMENT OF CENTRAL MANAGEMENT SERVICES

November 9, 2004.

DOROTHY SIMMONS, Plaintiff,
v.
DEPARTMENT OF CENTRAL MANAGEMENT SERVICES, Defendant.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: AMY J. ST. EVE, District Judge

MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER

Plaintiff Dorothy Simmons claims that Defendant Department of Central Management Services of the State of Illinois ("CMS") failed to promote her based on her sex and retaliated against her for filing a charge of discrimination. Defendant moves for summary judgment. As detailed below, the undisputed facts demonstrate that Defendant is entitled to judgment as a matter of law. Accordingly, Defendant's motion for summary judgment is granted.

FACTUAL BACKGROUND*fn1

  I. Plaintiff's Employment With Central Management Services

  A. Central Management Services

  Created in 1984, CMS is responsible for drafting, disseminating, collecting and reviewing bids and applications for promotions and promotional grades for the government employees of all of the state's agencies as well as for its own employees. (R. 37-1, Pl.'s Resp. to Def.'s Stmt. of Facts ¶¶ 13, 33.) CMS also has its own police force responsible for patrolling and policing various properties owned and maintained by the State of Illinois. (Id. at ¶ 21.) In Chicago, Illinois, the CMS police force polices the James R. Thompson Center ("JRTC") and the State of Illinois Building (now the Bilandic Building) among other sites. (Id. at ¶ 22.) In 2001, the available ranks on the CMS police force included Police Officer I, Police Officer II, Police Officer III, Lieutenant, Deputy Chief, and Chief. (Id. at ¶ 26.)

  B. Plaintiff Dorothy Simmons

  Plaintiff started working for the State of Illinois in 1971 with the Department of Mental Health ("DMH") in a clerical position. (R. 37-1, Pl.'s Resp. to Def.'s Stmt. of Facts ¶ 32.) In 1984, when the DMH police merged into the newly created CMS, Plaintiff began working as a Clerk-Stenographer III. (Id. at ¶ 33.) In 1993, Plaintiff applied for a police officer position with the CMS police force. (Id.) After CMS accepted her application, she trained for a year and became a Police Officer I on May 1, 1994. (Id. at ¶ 36; R. 25-1, Def.'s Stmt. of Facts, Ex. D 16.) Plaintiff was injured in February 2001, and CMS placed her on an injury leave of absence from October 24, 2001 to November 1, 2002. (R. 25-1, Def.'s Stmt. of Facts, Ex. D 20-21.) The CMS police had a practice of requiring officers to turn in their equipment while on an extended leave of absence, and on February 7, 2002, Plaintiff's supervisor, Lieutenant Tony Berger, called Plaintiff at home and informed her that she had to turn in her badge and weapon. (R. 37-1, Pl.'s Resp. to Def.'s Stmt. of Facts ¶¶ 111, 116.) Plaintiff complied with his request that same afternoon. (Id. at ¶ 120.) Plaintiff never returned to active duty and retired on November 1, 2002. (Id. at ¶¶ 44, 45.) C. Plaintiff's Work Performance

  Defendant never disciplined or suspended Plaintiff. (R. 42-1, Def.'s Resp. to Pl.'s Add'l Stmt. of Facts ¶ 19.) In Plaintiff's May 2001 performance review, Lt. Berger gave Plaintiff the same grades that Plaintiff gave herself in all categories except in "Human Relations." (R. 37-1, Pl.'s Resp. to Def.'s Stmt. of Facts ¶ 153.) Plaintiff graded herself as "Exceeding Expectations" in "Human Relations," but Lt. Berger gave her a grade of "Meeting Expectations." (Id.) In Plaintiff's May 2002 performance review, Lt. Berger again gave Plaintiff the same grades that Plaintiff gave herself in all categories except in "Human Relations." (Id. at ¶ 154.) Plaintiff graded herself as "Meeting Expectations," but Lt. Berger gave her a grade of "Needing Improvement." (Id.)

  II. Procedure For The Promotion Of CMS Officers

  A. The 2001 Lieutenant Position And Interviews

  On February 7, 2001, CMS began inviting applications for a vacant police lieutenant position. (R. 42-1, Def.'s Resp. to Pl.'s Add'l Stmt. of Facts ¶ 26.) All CMS officer ranks in 2001 were eligible to apply for the lieutenant position if the officers met the minimum requirements. (R. 37-1, Pl.'s Resp. to Def.'s Stmt. of Facts ¶ 52.) CMS posted the request for applications for the lieutenant position on a bulletin board on the third floor of the JRTC outside of the CMS Personnel Office.*fn2 (Id. at ¶ 65.) The last date to apply for the position was February 14, 2001. (Id. at ¶ 64.) The posting stated that employees interested in applying for the position should complete application form CMS 100 and mail it to Room 519 of the Stratton Office Building in Springfield, Illinois within the posted time limits. (Id. at ¶ 70.) The posting also stated that if applying for the position would result in a promotion and the applicant did not have a current grade for that title, the applicant must submit a yellow competitive promotional application, form CMS 100B, to Room 500 of the Stratton Office Building. (Id.) Room 500 of the Stratton Building, the Examining and Counseling Division of CMS, did not have any responsibility or role in the posting of the open lieutenant position or in accepting bid forms from interested applicants. (Id. at ¶ 57.) Furthermore, an applicant could request promotion grades at any time regardless of whether there was an actual opening for a particular position. (Id. at ¶ 58.)

  CMS also used a "bid form" in the promotional process. (Id. at ¶ 19.) This form directed applicants seeking a specific open promotion to submit the form to Room 519 of the Stratton Building. (Id.) It further informed applicants that if they did not yet have a promotional grade for the open position, they must also complete a CMS 100B yellow form to receive such a grade. (Id.) In order to receive an interview, an applicant must have submitted a completed application and a bid form. (Id. at ¶ 60.)

  Once CMS received the applications in Room 519 of the Stratton Building, it listed the names of the applicants and the date of receipt on a sheet of paper. (R. 42-1, Def.'s Resp. to Pl.'s Add'l Stmt. of Facts ¶ 41.) Chris Valentine, an interviewer for CMS Personnel in Springfield, Illinois, received this list and ensured that the applicants had the appropriate grade. (Id.) If the applicant had the appropriate grade, Mr. Valentine called him to schedule an interview. (Id.; R. 37-1, Pl.'s Resp. to Def.'s Stmt. of Facts, Ex. B 21-22.) If Room 519 of the Stratton Building received an application after the posted date, CMS marked the application late in the upper portion of the application form. (R. 42-1, Def.'s Resp. to Pl.'s Add'l Stmt. of Facts ¶ 42.) CMS's stated procedure was to interview only those applicants who submitted their applications by the closing deadline.*fn3 (R. 37-1, Pl.'s Resp. to Def.'s Stmt. of Facts ¶ 77; R. 37-1, Pl.'s Resp. to Def.'s Stmt. of Facts, Ex. B 25.)

  Mr. Valentine was involved in conducting eight interviews for the open lieutenant position on May 2, 2001 at the JRTC, (R. 37-1, Pl.'s Resp. to Def.'s Stmt. of Facts ¶ 78.) In October, CMS promoted Luis ...


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