United States District Court, D. Connecticut
ORDER GRANTING IN PART AND DENYING IN PART
DEFENDANT'S MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT
JEFFREY ALKER MEYER UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
Leigh Ann Marzano has filed this action against defendant
Southern New England Telephone Company (SNET) alleging that
she was unlawfully paid less than men who held the same job
that she did as a construction supervisor. SNET now moves for
summary judgment. I will grant the motion as to Marzano's
gender discrimination claims but deny it as to her claim for
a violation of the Equal Pay Act.
following facts are set forth in the light most favorable to
Marzano as the non-moving party. Marzano began working for
SNET in 1988 as a general office associate. Marzano did not
have a technical background, and over the next two decades
she held a variety of administrative jobs for SNET. In 2008,
she became a Project Manager at SNET. This new role involved
working on a battery project and included duties such as
ordering batteries, scheduling replacements of batteries, and
supervising the work of technicians related to the battery
was promoted in 2009 to the position of Construction
Supervisor within the Digital Electronics Group of SNET's
Construction and Engineering Organization. She continued to
serve in that position through November 2016 and the filing
of this lawsuit.
was promoted to the Construction Supervisor position by her
manager, Michael Imbriglio, who first approached her directly
about the position and told her that there would be no salary
increase if she accepted the new position. Promotion to a
management position ordinarily entailed a 10% salary
increase, but Marzano was told that this was not possible
because of budget concerns.
was one of several Construction Supervisors, all of whom were
men except for one woman who left SNET in 2014. Marzano had
the same job responsibilities as her peers, and she received
strong performance reviews.
Construction Supervisor, Marzano supervised between 10 and 18
technicians at any given time. The job description for the
Construction Supervisor position stated a preference for a
technical degree, as well as three to five years of
network-related technical experience, which Marzano did not
have. Although the parties dispute the extent to which
Marzano had any prior technical job experience, they do not
dispute that all of Marzano's peers at the Construction
Supervisor position had at least as much technical experience
as she did.
had union and non-union employees, and the Construction
Supervisor position was not a union bargaining unit position.
Coming into the new position, Marzano's salary was not as
high as it might have been had she been previously employed
as a bargaining unit employee. By contrast, all but one of
Marzano's peers at the Construction Supervisor position
were promoted to this position from more well-paying
bargaining unit positions at SNET, and their starting
salaries as Construction Supervisors took into account the
level of their prior salary.
Marzano started as a Construction Supervisor in 2009, she was
the lowest paid among her all-male peers. Her salary then was
$52, 607, compared to a range of between $76, 361 and $82,
344 that was paid to her four male peers.
the years from 2009 to 2016, Marzano received numerous salary
increases. Her base salary increased 60% during that term,
more than any other Construction Supervisor. In 2016, her
salary was $84, 301, which was still lower than all but one
of her five male peers serving as Construction Supervisors.
Four of her all-male peers earned between $84, 897 and $98,
479 in 2016.
the years that Marzano worked as a Construction Supervisor,
there was only one other female Construction Supervisor. This
female peer worked from 2010 to 2014, and she was paid a
higher salary than Marzano, ranging from between $83, 124 and
$88, 955. This female peer's salary was not only higher
than Marzano's but higher than most of their male peers
who worked as Construction Supervisors.
complained about her salary as early as 2009 or 2010. Marzano
was told by Imbriglio that it was a “dead-end
situation” and that she would need to be rated far
ahead of her peers to justify a higher salary. Marzano was
not told that her salary was less than her peers because of
her prior non-bargaining unit position or because of her
prior lack of technical or other educational experience.
filed this lawsuit in July 2016. Count One of the complaint
alleges a claim for gender discrimination in violation of
Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. §
2000e et seq. Count Two alleges a claim for gender
discrimination in violation of the Connecticut Fair
Employment Practices Act (CFEPA), Conn. Gen. Stat. §
46a-60(a)(1). Count Three alleges a claim under the Equal Pay
Act, 29 U.S.C. § 206. Although the complaint alleges
that Marzano was subject to numerous forms of discrimination,