The University of Minnesota paid almost $300,000 in legal settlements to two University employees who reported being sexually harassed by former athletics director Norwood Teague.
According to documents published in the Star Tribune, the University paid the employees settlements and covered attorney fees and medical costs.
Teague resigned in August 2015 amid allegations of sexual misconduct by two University employees, who later came forward as Ann Aronson and Erin Dady. The first reported incident occurred on a University leadership retreat to Breezy Point Resort in 2015.
In a statement to the University, Aronson and Dady, who held senior leadership positions in President Eric Kaler’s office, said Teague’s behavior was “frightening and wrong.”
“In sharing our story today, we hope to make it easier for those who experience sexual harassment and assault to come forward,” the statement read.
The documents published in the Star Tribune redact the names of the recipients, but the time frame of the settlement coincides with the allegations of Aronson and Dady.
According to the Star Tribune report, Dady left her position in Kaler’s office one year after the retreat. In the settlement, the unnamed employee is offered a severance package of $181,630, the equivalent of one year’s salary for the current position.
The settlements also cover medical expenses within two years of the incident for both recipients and $25,000 each in attorney fees. In exchange, the recipients cannot seek further settlements, and forfeit liability on the University’s part.
“At times, the use of settlements to acknowledge wrongs and attempt to heal wounds is entirely appropriate,” said University spokesperson Evan Lapiska in a statement. “At the time of this incident, the University was very transparent and Norwood Teague quickly left the University. Since then, the University's policies have been strengthened and we have learned from the past. But we also continue to work to reinforce a culture that prevents sexual misconduct and aggressively addresses it when it occurs.”