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Eight witnesses took the stand Wednesday for what felt at times like a rapid-fire lightning round as testimony concluded in the trial for Shannon Miller and the University of Minnesota Duluth. Miller, who coached the Bulldogs women's hockey team for 16 seasons before her contract was non-renewed in December 2014, is suing the university for sex discrimination and Title IX retaliation.
One expert testified Tuesday that Shannon Miller suffered approximately $3 million in lost compensation and wages when the University of Minnesota Duluth decided to sever ties with her after 16 seasons as head women's hockey coach. Another expert testified that Miller has put in less than one job application per month over the three years since her non-renewal, describing her employment-seeking efforts as "passive" and "inadequate."
An emotional Shannon Miller returned to the witness stand on Monday, telling jurors in her federal discrimination lawsuit about the December 2014 decision that ended her tenure as women's hockey coach at the University of Minnesota Duluth after 16 seasons. Miller spent all morning and part of the afternoon testifying about complaints she had made at UMD, the non-renewal of her contract and her unsuccessful efforts to find employment in the years since.
Former University of Minnesota Duluth women's hockey coach Shannon Miller took the witness stand Friday in her federal discrimination lawsuit against the school. Miller spent about an hour and 15 minutes testifying about her life history, coaching career and challenges she said she faced at UMD — but she did not have an opportunity to address the December 2014 non-renewal of her contract before the trial took its weekend break.
University of Minnesota Duluth men's hockey coach Scott Sandelin testified Thursday that he was "shocked" and "surprised" by the mid-season announcement that his colleague Shannon Miller would be let go as coach of the women's program. Sandelin, whose tenure at the school had roughly paralleled Miller's, recalled being caught off guard by news reports of the December 2014 decision. "It was big news," he said. "I was shocked a little bit, surprised at the timing of it. We were colleagues. It was the middle of the year. I was a little shocked."
Attorneys for Shannon Miller sought to show jurors Wednesday that the University of Minnesota Duluth shifted its rationale for letting go of its longtime women's hockey coach only after facing significant public backlash. Questioning Chancellor Lendley Black and athletic director Josh Berlo on the second day of the federal discrimination trial, the attorneys focused heavily on the explanations given to Miller for her 2014 non-renewal.
University of Minnesota Duluth Chancellor Lendley Black sat in the front row of a courtroom Tuesday, surrounded by fellow school officials and supporters. On the opposite side sat his predecessor, Kathryn Martin, accompanied by past players and supporters of former women's hockey coach Shannon Miller. If the seating arrangement didn't provide a clear juxtaposition, their trips to the witness stand would.
A federal judge on Monday sought to narrow the focus of evidence in the discrimination lawsuit brought against the University of Minnesota Duluth by former women's hockey coach Shannon Miller. Judge Patrick Schiltz spent nearly three hours meeting with attorneys on the eve of the long-awaited trial in U.S. District Court in Duluth. The judge did not outright exclude any potential witnesses, but did place some parameters for the introduction of expert testimony and other evidence that could be heard by jurors.
The time has come for Shannon Miller and the University of Minnesota Duluth. More than three years after the school announced it would sever ties with its five-time championship-winning women's hockey coach, sparking controversy and a federal lawsuit, a jury will finally have its say. Miller's high-stakes discrimination case against her longtime employer goes to trial this week at the federal courthouse in Duluth. Jury selection will start Tuesday, with a verdict expected next week. U.S. District Judge Patrick Schiltz, a Duluth native, is presiding over the case.
A judge has reinstated most of the charges he earlier dismissed against a defendant who was shot by Hibbing police last year after allegedly assaulting another man and pointing a firearm at officers. In a rare reversal of his own ruling, 6th Judicial District Judge Mark Starr said three counts of first-degree assault should be restored in the case of 24-year-old Che Nathaniel Jones.