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Real Deal: Harassment complaints against Stuckey were downplayed by Forest City executives

In When the glass ceiling won’t break, a 1/1/18 Real Deal article on the gender gap in real estate, there are a couple of new nuggets regarding Forest City Ratner/Forest City New York and former executive Jim Stuckey, who left in 2007--after what was later revealed as sexual harassment allegations--and then left his next job, at NYU, after similar allegations. Neither were formally adjudicated.

From Kathryn Brenzel:
James Stuckey, who in the early aughts led Forest City’s massive Atlantic Yards project in Brooklyn (now called Pacific Park), was known for surrounding himself with hardworking, intelligent women. People would jokingly refer to the rotating group of female subordinates as “Jim’s harem.”
I hadn't heard that latter phrase, but certainly that description.

In-house resistance

The Real Deal got its hands on a document not made public:
In a draft complaint that was intended to be filed with the EEOC in 2007, one of the Forest City employees said Stuckey rubbed her leg and told her that she would go far in the company. Another woman alleged that she repeatedly reported inappropriate comments Stuckey made about her body.
Other executives at the company responded by pointing out that Stuckey was “an important person,” or that his behavior was something that they’d get used to, according to the complaint, which was provided to TRD by an anonymous source. The case was ultimately settled before being filed with the EEOC. Bonadio’s lawsuit was also quietly settled in 2016.
Today, Forest City spokeswoman Ashley Cotton said, things are different: "Forest City continues to implement stringent policies that reflect our commitment to diversity and industry-leading record of female leadership."

Sure, times (and leaders) have changed. That said, it begs the question as to why company executives (allegedly) accepted Stuckey's untoward behavior as the price of having a capable executive steering a tricky project.

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