U.S. Pays Man $250,000 to Settle Sex Lawsuit

August 1, 1996

U.S. Pays Man $250,000 to Settle Sex Lawsuit

The Peace Corps has settled a sexual harassment suit by agreeing to pay $250,000 to a former employee who said his female boss kissed him and grabbed him on several occasions. The man's lawyer said he believes t he settlement is the largest ever paid by the federal government to a male employee accusing a female manager of harassment.

The settlement allows the man, Raymond W. Millikin Jr., 55, of Vienna, to retain the right to say that he was sexually harassed by his boss. But it admits no wrongdoing by the female manager, former Inspector General Deborah Holt Kirk, 45, who resigned earlier this year, or by any of the other Peace Corps managers, The Washington Post reported this morning. Millikin said that after months of rebuffing Kirk's advances, which included promises of promotion, he became the target of unwarranted scru tiny and criticism by Kirk and other Peace Corps managers. They denied him a promotion and assigned him to tedious tasks.

Millikin claimed in his lawsuit that Kirk initially invited him out after work to discuss office operations. He said Kirk began to make sexual advances toward him and then continued despite continual reminders that he was married. On a 1994 business tri p to Poland, Kirk allegedly sat on his lap in a hotel room, kissing him and making sexual demands. Millikin said he never had sex with Kirk.

The settlement was reached two weeks ago and has now been approved by U.S. District Judge Stanley Harris. Millikin, who worked for the government for 30 years, agrees to retire in the settlement. He plans to move to a Montana ranch he and his wife own. Though Kirk was not charged in the lawsuit, her lawyer, Stanley Brand, criticized the settlement.

"I think this is shabby treatment by the Peace Corps of one of their former employees," Brand told The Washington Post.

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