The official University of Michigan Title IX case was mistreated at another Big 10 university

ANN ARBOR, MI – A lawsuit filed on February 28 alleges that several people, including Tamiko Strickman, director of the University of Michigan’s Office of Institutional Equity, mistreated a sexual misconduct case at the University of Nebraska.

The lawsuit, which was filed in the Nebraska District Court, states that Strickman was serving as an investigator and assistant coordinator for Title IX in Nebraska when a graduate student – referred to as Jane Doe in the lawsuit – reported sexual harassment by one of her professors.

Less than seven months after enrolling in Nebraska’s mechanical and materials engineering degree in 2014, Does’s consultant, a John Roe professor in a suit, kissed her on the lips in his office, the lawsuit said. She was 26 years old at the time, while the professor was over 60 according to the lawsuit.

The sexual harassment continued until 2015 when Roe tried to hug the student, telling her he loved her and kicked her legs between 20 and 30 times according to legal proceedings. Roe would also harass Doe with unsolicited texts and emails, the lawsuit said.

In Roe’s “Retribution Campaign Against Plaintiff,” he also downgraded the student from first to second author, on a piece of paper she wrote to meet her doctoral requirements under the lawsuit. He said Doe “just doesn’t seem interested in participating” and has not “worked seriously on the project,” the lawsuit said.

In 2016, Doe met with Strickman and Susan Foster, director of the Nebraska Office of Institutional Equity and Compliance, where she texted Strickman and Foster about the harassment, the lawsuit said. Not long after, Strickman and Foster stopped answering Doe’s calls and emails, making Doe “feel like she was more of the molester than the victim,” according to the complaint.

Strickman and Foster directed Doe not to tell anyone about their complaint and tried to convince them to drop the case, the lawsuit said. Later that year, a letter signed by Strickman indicated that Roe had violated Nebraska’s sexual harassment policies but incorrectly characterized parts of Roe’s harassment and failed to take into account the evidence presented during the investigation, the lawsuit said.

There was a no-contact briefing between the student and the professor, but his harassment continued, which resulted in Doe filing a second complaint, according to the lawsuit. No investigation was opened and the student began her doctoral program at another school in 2017, the lawsuit said.

Even after attending another school, the professor copied Doe in an email to other Nebraska students, and Doe emailed Strickman to inform them that he had violated the no-contact policy, it says in the lawsuit. Strickman did not respond to the first email or a follow-up confirming that she had received the first email.

Feeling discriminated against by Nebraska, Doe apologized. Strickman sent her a two-sentence email stating that the matter had been resolved.

The lawsuit alleges breach of Title IX, gender discrimination and negligence, and seeks compensation for emotional distress and costs.

The lawsuit states that Strickman was fired from her position in Nebraska in December 2019. UM announced on December 16, 2019 that Strickman had been named Vice President, Institutional Equity of OIE, and her appointment was effective January 1, 2019. 6, 2020.

Michael Zeleny, chief of staff and staff member for the chancellor in Nebraska, said Strickman was not fired from Nebraska but left for her position with UM. UM spokesman Rick Fitzgerald said the university was not aware of any incident when Strickman was hired.

Of Fitzgerald, Strickman said she was unable to comment due to pending litigation in Nebraska.

Since Strickman’s hiring, UM has been at the center of several high profile sexual misconduct cases, including former provost Martin Philbert, late UM sports doctor Robert Anderson, former UM professor Stephen Shipps, and engineering professors Jason Mars and Peter Chen.

UM hired Guidepost Solutions to implement recommendations from a report on years of misconduct by Philbert. Attorneys representing hundreds of Anderson survivors are currently in mediation. In January, Chen was charged with first-degree criminal sexual behavior involving a minor under the age of 13, and Mars resigned from his position as CEO of Clinc, an Ann Arbor-based AI startup, on allegations of inappropriate behavior.


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