Green Bay Furniture-Maker Fired Executive for Exposing CEO's Sexual Affairs
The former president of a major Green Bay manufacturing firm, Roderick Ganiard, claims he was wrongly terminated after confronting his boss - CEO and philanthropist Richard Resch - about how his repeated affairs with female staffers were hurting the company. Ganiard filed a lawsuit against Resch and office furniture-maker Krueger International, alleging at least five women have brought sexual harassment complaints against the company, and that Resch forced Ganiard out after he led the company to record sales--which is retaliation.
"Mr. Ganiard was an at-will employee who had a written contract," said George Burnett, attorney for Resch and KI. "He does not like the severance package he negotiated and now is alleging all sorts of garbage."
Burnett said the allegations of sexual harassment are false and were not part of Ganiard's original lawsuit filed in state court last year. The company last month had the case moved to federal court, where the defendants' motion to dismiss is pending.
According to court records, Ganiard alleges a woman in her early 20s said Resch, 70, constantly asked her out and offered to transfer her to working directly for him. Mark Olsen, a 30-year employee and chief financial officer, resigned after Resch flew into a rage when Olsen confronted him about the complaint. Resch pressured the company to hire a waitress he met. The woman was very open with other KI employees about the fact that she was dating Richard Resch and her relationship with him. One woman who had a long-term relationship with Resch was earning substantially less than her peers in the company. Ganiard said he learned Resch "compensated her off the books with a number of indiscrete benefits" - including a home, trips and college tuition for her children.