Former Univision Exec Files Discrimination Lawsuit Against Former Employer

A lawsuit against Univision claims that a (now-deceased) CEO ridiculed a Latino executive's accent, complained about her age, paid her less than other senior-level executives and then fired her in 2008 without a work-related cause, reports the Huffington Post.

The federal employment discrimination suit, filed in New York this month by former Univision National Radio Sales president Laura Hagan, names former Katz Media CEO Stu Olds as the discriminatory CEO who created a hostile environment. Olds died of Leukemia in late 2010 at the age of 60.

Hagan, 66, is originally from Ecuador and claims that when she was fired in 2008 she was the only employee of Hispanic descent working as an executive in Univision Radio's national sales division. Hagan worked for Univision from 1987 to 1991 and later rejoined the company in 1994 -- staying until her firing in October of 2008. During her time, Hagan served as the company's vice president of sales and executive vice president of sales before being promoted to president. During the last six years at the company, the ad sales division outperformed the company's projections. From 2002 to 2008, Radio, Inc., a trade magazine, listed Hagan as one of the "25 Most Influential Women in Radio."

The suit claims that in 2004, Olds allegedly altered a photo that was either Carmen Miranda or the Chiquita Banana lady to include Hagan's face and displayed the image at a meeting in Miami attended by 250 Univision managers. The suit also claims that Olds made many remarks about her age, to other employees, and also complained about Hagan's accent -- stating that it was a liability and impediment to business.

When Hagan was fired, Olds told other employees that Hagan had retired. Hagan submitted her complaints to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the nation's workplace discrimination watchdog agency.

What do you think of the suit? Do you think it's strange to file a suit against a now-deceased exec? Share in the comments!

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