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Wilkie v. The Golub Corporation

United States District Court, Second Circuit

September 24, 2013

WILLIAM WILKIE, Plaintiff,
v.
THE GOLUB CORPORATION, Defendant.

CORY R. DALMATA, ESQ., DeLorenzo Law Firm, Schenectady, NY, for the Plaintiff.

PATRICK J. SACCOCIO, ESQ., Parisi, Coan Law Firm, Schenectady, NY, for the Defendant.

MEMORANDUM-DECISION AND ORDER

GARY L. SHARPE, Chief District Judge.

I. Introduction

Plaintiff William Wilkie commenced this action against defendant The Golub Corporation, alleging employment discrimination under Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)[1] and the New York Executive Law §§ 296 and 297 ("Human Rights Law").[2] (Compl., Dkt. No. 1.) Pending before the court is Golub's motion for summary judgment, on the grounds that Wilkie failed to exhaust the administrative remedies available to him and, alternatively, that Wilkie was not a qualified individual with a disability pursuant to the ADA. (Dkt. No. 15, Attach. 3 at 4.) For the reasons that follow, Golub's motion is granted.

II. Background

A. Facts

Wilkie was employed by Golub's transportation department as a truck driver beginning in 1995. (Def.'s Statement of Material Facts (SMF) ¶ 1, Dkt. No. 15, Attach. 3 at 4-6.) In 2004, Wilkie was diagnosed with type II diabetes, which he controlled by way of diet, exercise, and an oral hypoglycemic, but not the use of insulin. ( Id. ¶ 5; Compl. ¶¶ 11-12.)

On August 16, 2010, Wilkie underwent a physical examination in conjunction with the certification process to drive a commercial motor vehicle. (Def.'s SMF ¶ 7.) This examination was performed by Jennifer Hilligrass, a registered nurse employed by Access Health Systems ("Access"). (Dkt. No. 18, Attach. 3 at 3-4.) Golub had contracted with Access to perform examinations of its truck drivers as required by the Department of Transportation (DOT) in order to certify the drivers to operate a commercial motor vehicle in interstate commerce. (Dkt. No. 15, Attach. 1 ¶¶ 8-9.) Upon completion of that examination, Wilkie was informed that he had passed the physical, and his medical certification was renewed. (Def.'s SMF ¶ 8.) However, the following day, Dr. Warren Silverman, a physician employed by Access and the physician responsible for performing DOT physicals for Golub's truck drivers, determined Wilkie's blood sugar levels to be too high to safely operate a commercial motor vehicle. ( Id. ¶¶ 8-10; Dkt. No. 15, Attach. 1 ¶ 9.)

Following Dr. Silverman's determination, Wilkie was told that his medical certification would have to be revoked. (Def.'s SMF ¶ 9; Dkt. No. 15, Attach. 4 at 23.) Consequently, Wilkie was told he could no longer work as a truck driver for Golub. (Def.'s SMF ¶ 12; Dkt. No. 15, Attach. 4 at 32.) Thereafter, Wilkie filed written charges of employment discrimination with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and was issued a "Right to Sue" letter by the EEOC. (Compl. ¶ 8.)

B. Procedural History

Wilkie commenced this ADA action on September 13, 2011. ( See generally Compl.) In his pleading, Wilkie alleges that he was discriminated against as a result of his diabetes, in violation of the ADA and the New York State Human Rights Law. ( Id. ¶¶ 18-34.) Consequently, he seeks compensatory, consequential and punitive damages, and attorney fees. ( Id. at 5.) Following joinder of issue, (Dkt. No. 6), Golub moved for summary judgment. (Dkt. No. 15.)

III. Standard of Review

The standard of review pursuant to Fed.R.Civ.P. 56 is well established and will not be repeated here. For a full discussion of the standard, the court refers the parties to its decision in ...


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