United States District Court, S.D. New York
February 11, 2004.
BEVERLY ZAKRE, Plaintiff, -against- NORDDEUTSCHE LANDESBANK GIROZENTRALE, Defendant
The opinion of the court was delivered by: ROBERT SWEET, Senior District Judge
The plaintiff Beverly Zakre ("Zakre") seeks documents and interrogatory
responses from defendant Norddeutsche Landesbank `Girozentrale ("Nord
L/B") in this action in which Zakre has alleged sex discrimination and
retaliation. As set forth below, the motion is granted in part and denied
The complaint alleges that Nord L/B discriminated against Zakre by
failing to promote her to Treasurer in its New York branch and by
retaliating against her following her complaint against the
discrimination. The parties have appropriately conferred and failed to
resolve their differences.
The issues relate to:
Document Request 7 which requests documents relating
to the performance of the Product
Development/Investment Bank subgroup of the Treasury
Document Request 8 which makes a similar request with
respect to the Money Markets subgroup;
Document Request 15 requesting documents concerning
complaints against Jons Westrick ("Westrick"), the
branch manager who chose the three finalists for the
Interrogatory 11 requesting identification of all Nord
L/B employees who complained about Westrick to Nord
Document Request 23 requesting documents reflecting
reasons for the departure of any former female
officers in Nord L/B's New York office;
Document Request 25 requesting documents reflecting
when females were made officers in any Nord L/B branch
other than the New York branch; and
Document Request 26 requesting documents reflecting
the reason for the departure of any female officer in
any Nord L/B branch other than the New York branch.
From the parties' submission it appears that the decision with respect
to the selection of the Treasurer was made in Germany by Jurgen Kosters,
a member of the Board of Management of Nord L/B. The defendant has 30
branches and other offices in 10 countries with over 9,000 employees.
Zakre was working in the Capital Markets subgroup, one of three
subgroups in the Treasury Department of the New York branch which is the
only Nord L/B branch in the United States and which has 68 employees. The
Product Development/Investment Banking group
came into existence after the selection of the Treasurer in September
The documents relating to the performance of the subgroup may lead to
admissible evidence of retaliation and, in the instance of the Money
Markets subgroup, evidence of discrimination. similarly, the documents
and interrogatory answers relating to complaints about Westrick may lead
to evidence of conduct relating to gender discrimination. The same
reasoning applies to the reasons for the departure of other female
The discovery sought regarding the treatment of female officers and
their reasons for departing from the bank in the nine other countries
where Nord L/B has branches under the circumstances is burdensome and it
has not been shown that it would lead to evidence with respect to
compliance with the laws applicable to Nord L/B in the United States.
Document Requests 7, 8, 15 and 23 and Interrogatory Request 11 are
granted. Document Requests 25 and 26 are denied.
It is so ordered.
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