Artis v. Greenspan (Bernanke Yellen): An Observation


For several years, the blog has covered topics related to an employment discrimination case titled Artis v. Greenspan. Plaintiff’s counsel was Walter T. Charlton.

As the case proceeded nearly 19 years, the case citation changed with the change in Board Chairs. Hence, the blog has referred to the case as Artis v. Greenspan Bernanke Yellen.

The Artis case is fascinatingly sad.

  • Sad because the case showed the approach to black employees at the Board.
  • Fascinating because the case demonstrated the Board’s preference to obfuscate and do its own thing regardless of fairness or legal requirements.

As a result, rejecting this cottage mentality and supporting transparency and fairness, fuels the blog’s interest in the Artis case. Moreover, the D.C. Circuit’s opinion in Artis is a requirement for present and prospective employees, as the case may be gone, but the deeply entrenched employment practices and management attitudes of exclusion may still be present.

See, for example, Sheila Clark. She was involved in the problematic management decisions, yet she is assigned to the so-called corrective action. The Board demonstrates with this action that it is not interested in complying with employment laws.

In addition, the blog has also commented on the Board’s Inspector General’s (IG) audit report, 2015-MO-B-006. In comments to this IG report, Board chief operating officer, Don Hammond, indicated continued obstinacy in the Board’s practices.

Returning to Artis, the Supreme Court has denied certiorari for the case, meaning the case has ended. However, the lessons from the case will live on.

Quote from Rev. Thomas Merton’s book, “Seeds of Destruction.”

(Pope Francis mentioned Rev. Merton during his remarks before a joint session of Congress.)–

But the [civil rights] laws have been framed in a way that in every case their execution has depended on the good will of white society, and the white man has not failed, when left to himself, to block, obstruct, or simply forget the necessary action without which the rights of the Negro cannot be engaged in fact. (Page 19).

January 11, 2011: D.C. Circuit’s Remands Artis to the federal U.S. District Court, the Board Establishes Its OMWI Office, and Sheila Clark

This discussion reflects comments from a blog post on November 13, 2015.

Some pertinent background facts

January 11, 2011: Artis v Greenspan–The Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, issued a decision against the Board, remanding the case to the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.

January 11, 2011: The Board announced that it had created offices of diversity and inclusion for the Board and the Federal Reserve Banks. The director of the Board’s office was named–Ms. Sheila Clark.

Ms. Sheila Clark

Clark & Professor Robert D. Auerbach, Author of “Deception and Abuse at the Fed:  Henry B. Gonzalez Battles Alan Greenspan’s Bank”

There was a Huffington Post article by Professor Robert D. Auerbach, author of “Deception and Abuse at the Fed: Henry B. Gonzalez Battles Alan Greenspan’s Bank,” in which he stated (reference (about letter) is located at page 123 of his book).

Quote from the article:

“The Fed Press Release states that Sheila Clark will be one of the heads of the “diversity and inclusion offices” at the Board. I have a copy of a letter sent by her (10/27/1995) stating that “while the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System has taken the position that [missing ‘it”] is not subject to the [C]ivil [R]ights Act of 1964, as amended, and its associated executive orders and regulations, it subscribes fully to their basic goals and spirit.” Yet, the Federal government’s Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) had told Greenspan emphatically as early as 1989 that the Commission’s position was that Title VII of the Civil Rights Act applied fully to the Federal Reserve.”

Sheila Clark’s letter to the EEOC (printed in the Auerbach book, page 123).

Clark & the D.C. Circuit Opinion in Artis

Sheila Clark was involved in the case.

On page 12 of the D.C. Circuit opinion, class member Donna Dorey alleged that her manager (McKosh) did not adjust her schedule to allow her to attend college courses for a degree, while allowing a white employee to change her schedule for a vanpool. Dorey also alleged that her supervisor (McKosh) “humiliated her in front of the Board” by describing the circumstances of one particular leave request.

Moreover, Dorey stated that “her managers discussed her leave requests with human resources and shared personal information with other employees, including Rena Carlton, an employee relations specialist. Dorey also claimed that the Board’s EEO Director, Sheila Clark, and EEO Counselor, Millie Wiggins, discouraged her from filing a previous EEO complaint alleging discrimination in her performance rating.

Report of the Congressional Tri-Caucus and the Board

Representative Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) and other Congressional Democrats issued a report (Waters Report) about diversity within the federal financial regulatory agencies. The executive summary for the report indicated that the Board’s director for the Office of Minority and Women Inclusion (at the time of this writing, the Board calls the office, the Office of Diversity and Inclusion (or ODI)) is Ms. Sheila Clark.

In addition, the executive summary of the Waters Report (page 5) stated the following about the Board:

The Federal Reserve Board of Governors (“FRB”)

OMWI Director–Sheila Clark

The Federal Reserve Board is the central bank of the United States, and in addition to working to provide a safer, more stable and flexible monetary system, it also regulates bank holding companies, and the largest, most complex non-bank financial institutions in the country.

In racial, ethnic and gender categories, its workforce diversity was found to exceed the diversity found within the civilian labor force.

The FRB has the most diverse general workforce and the largest percentage of women employees in senior management.

Yet, notably the FRB OIG determined that the diversity data collected was not validated against the agency’s employee electronic human resources records which undermines the integrity of the agency’s diversity efforts and its strong empirical diversity data.

The FRB does not have a finalized set of diversity and inclusion standards as required under the Dodd-Frank Act.

Walter T. Charlton, Counsel of Cynthia Artis and the Class Members

[Discussion from a blog post on December 11, 2015.]

Walter T. Charlton, Counsel for Cynthia Artis, et al., in the extremely long duration employment discrimination case, Artis v. Greenspan Bernanke Yellen spoke about the Federal Reserve Board in 2002.

The Board acts as if equal opportunity is an undeserved burden, one which it does not have to respond to. This whole case is an abomination because one witnesses the Board as a passive yet determined and obstinate barrier against equal employment opportunity.

See video on the C-Span website. (