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Press Release 01-05-2010

Vanguard Group to Pay $300,000 to Settle EEOC Suit Alleging Racial Bias in Hiring

PHILADELPHIA – The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) today announced a $300,000 litigation settlement with Vanguard Group, Inc. on behalf of a qualified black applicant who the federal agency says was refused hire for a financial planning manager position because of her race, despite substantial work experience. Malvern, Pa.-based Vanguard Group, one of the world's largest investment management companies, will also furnish significant equitable relief as part of the EEOC consent decree resolving the case.

The EEOC charged in the lawsuit that Barbara Alexander was well qualified for the position of financial planning manager she applied for at Vanguard's Charlotte, N.C., office, but was rejected for hire based on her race. Alexander possessed 14 years of financial management experience and held an MBA degree in finance, yet Vanguard instead hired a less qualified white applicant.

In addition to the $300,000 in monetary relief for Alexander, the two-year consent decree with Vanguard includes injunctive relief prohibiting the company from engaging in discrimination or retaliation, anti-discrimination training, and the posting of a notice about the settlement. Vanguard did not admit liability in the consent decree resolving the case. The EEOC filed the suit under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania (Civil Action No. 09-CV-04424).

Acting Regional Attorney Debra Lawrence of the EEOC's Philadelphia District Office, said, "We commend Vanguard for its willingness to resolve this matter amicably and early in the litigation process. The additional training for company managers and supervisors provided by the consent decree should benefit all employees at the company's Malvern facility."

The EEOC enforces federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination. Further information about the EEOC is available on its web site at