Adams State University satisfied with results of mediation


After completing mediation, Adams State University reached a satisfactory decision regarding an unsuccessful job applicant and the American Civil Liberties Union of Colorado, according to Julie Waechter, Adams State assistant to the president for communications.

The case was introduced following criticism brought by a former contractor regarding university hiring and compensation policies. Adams State officials clarified that the ACLU did not "win" the case; Danny Ledonne was not compensated by the university. The university's insurance company paid the ACLU attorney fees; the only cost to Adams State was a $2,500 deductible, according to Waechter.

She added the persona non grata ban was not, as Mr. Ledonne claimed, in response to his criticism. The ban was in response to concerns expressed by faculty, staff, and students. No fault was found against Adams State University or the administration. In fact, the University continued to comply with all his requests for information after the ban.

Clarifying Facts: Ledonne vs. McClure et al.

  • Ledonne filed a motion for a preliminary injunction, arguing that his due process rights were violated. After a full day of hearing testimony, Judge Moore denied that motion.
  • While statements have been made that he was a professor, Ledonne was never employed as a tenure-track faculty member. Instead, he was on a one-year, temporary contract that ended May 2015. He was not an employee of Adams State University when he was issued the persona non grata.
  • On two occasions, Ledonne applied for a tenure-track faculty position which he did not receive. Ultimately, a faculty search committee filled the position with a highly qualified individual.
  • The settlement with ACLU has a provision that Ledonne is to have no contact with a female professor who was on the selection committee that chose another candidate. This restriction from contact is for a one-year period.
  • As part of the settlement, the University's insurance carrier agreed to pay a portion of the ACLU attorneys' fees. By doing so, this allowed the University to focus on its mission, rather than continued litigation. The agreement ultimately saved the University time and money.
  • After the Board of Trustees failed to create an unfunded position specifically for him at his request at the October 2, 2015, meeting, Ledonne posted a number of articles critical of Adams State University.
  • The University has continuously complied with all of Ledonne's requests for information, regardless of the intended use of the information, and even after the issuance of the persona non grata. The persona non grata did not impact his access to information, nor did it restrain his ability to advocate his position – he continued to have access to University records.
  • Ledonne will only have the same access to the campus that other members of the general public have.
Adams State prides itself on being a leader in the Colorado community, particularly in the southern and western regions of the state. The university is a strong supporter of a diverse on-campus community and the Hispanic population of Colorado as a Federal HSI (Hispanic Serving Institution), affirming enrollment of at least 25 percent Hispanic students. Adams State's current undergraduate Hispanic enrollment is roughly 35 percent. Adams State University serves as a vital engine of education and economic prosperity. As one of the single largest employers in the region, Adams State will continue to provide jobs and a high-quality education to people locally. Adams State University is committed to providing a high-achievement and high-altitude learning environment to people from all over the world.