The former director of California’s AIDS/LifeCycle fundraiser has sued two HIV/AIDS nonprofits that put on the ride, claiming they fired him because he is not gay.
Jeffrey Shapiro filed suit Thursday in Los Angeles Superior Court, alleging sexual-orientation discrimination and intentional infliction of emotional distress by his former employers, the Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Community Services Center and the San Francisco AIDS Foundation, KCBS in Los Angeles reported.
In his lawsuit, Shapiro claims leaders of the two HIV/AIDS groups hired him in March, then met with him in June and fired him, telling him that “everybody liked him as a person, but they needed somebody who better fit into the culture,” KCBS reported.
Ok. This is really pissing me off right now. This guy was brought on in March to replace the outgoing director Chris Cole. In the second article they basically say that he’s responsible for the $11million dollars that was raised this year. This guy wasn’t brought on till LATE in the fund raising cycle and has nothing to do with how much was raised. He was brought in on a trail period to see if he worked out. During which time he was to be shadowing Chris Cole and learning how the ride is run.
The first I had heard about this guy was while on the ride itself. They brought him up on stage a few times and even during those interactions. Where he was just talking on stage. It was clear to _ME_ and a lot of other people in the audience that he just didn’t have the enthusiasm that it would take to get and keep this ride going strong.
Chris Cole, Stephen Cadby, Sheri Lunn, Lorri L. Jean and the many others who we were introduced to day in and day out on the stage got up there and got the crowd going and got us all enthused to be there.
When Shapiro took the stage he was always monotone and didn’t really have much to say. Talking to a lot of my fellow riders, I’ve heard that thier personal interactions with him were much the same. It’s also been said that he lacked the knowledge to be helpful in the gay community and some people even said he needed a “Gay 101” course. He never really exhibited the passion that even I have for the ride after being a participant only once. Nor did he seem to exhibit the energy or enthusiasm that a new comer should have had.
The fact that he’s even suing for discrimination in an event such as this is just ridiculous. More then 50% of the ride is heterosexual, ALC is such a HUGE cross section of humanity in general.
This guy was hired on a trail basis and from what everyone has said he left on mutual agreement. I hope that this does not drag on and that he will not be rewarded for acting this way. The money that he would get would be coming from our hard work as fund raisers and would be taking away from the great services that the ride serves.
I encourage everyone to go and sign up for the ride in 2008!!!!