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  • Higher Education
  • University of California
Michele Coyle
Michele Coyle (Miller Barondess LLP)

A Riverside Superior Court jury has awarded a former UC Riverside counsel $2.5 million, finding that university officials violated state law when they fired her in retaliation for reporting allegations of sex discrimination against women.

Michele Coyle, who served as chief campus counsel from 2006 to 2012, alleged that she and other women were subjected to "rampant gender discrimination" by Dallas M. Rabenstein, who became UC Riverside executive vice chancellor in 2010. 

In a civil complaint filed in March 2015, Coyle alleged that Rabenstein favored men for promotions and salary increases, intentionally misreported data on gender-based salary differences for a federal audit, refused to accommodate women with young children, called some women "biddies" and labeled others who asked for raises as "overly aggressive."