A former Weatherford College employee filed a lawsuit against the institution for alleged sexual harassment and retaliation by President Todd Farmer. The employee claims Farmer made inappropriate comments and unwanted advances. The plaintiff, Shelley Gipson, began as the college’s external relations officer but said she was shuffled around between other departments after rejecting Farmer.
Gipson worked at the Texas community college for roughly 11 months, according to details in the lawsuit.
The lawsuit was filed last month, and the college has responded with a motion to dismiss. However, the judge overseeing the case denied that motion on Sept. 14, ruling that the case may continue. Gipson is seeking back pay, legal fees, punitive damages and other monetary awards as part of her lawsuit against the college.
The ongoing lawsuit prompted protests Thursday at a Weatherford College presidential luncheon, with students and former staff members backing Gipson, The Huntsville Item reported. The college has not yet issued a public statement addressing the allegations against Farmer but told local media that it would not curtail the First Amendment rights of protesters on campus.