By Patsy R. Brumfield/NEMS Daily Journal
ABERDEEN – Hospital board attorney George Dulin was fired illegally because he was white, a federal jury agreed Thursday.
Dulin was 80 years old when he was fired by the Greenwood Leflore Hospital’s board of commissioner. He filed a racial discrimination lawsuit in 2007.
The jury awarded him $12,000 in back pay and $70,000 in compensatory damages for emotional pain and suffering. It also awarded attorneys fees.
Dulin was represented by Tupelo attorneys Jim Waide and Rachel Pierce.
Pierce said it was Dulin’s second trial in the case. District Judge Sharion Aycock dismissed the first trial, ruling that Dulin did not have enough evidence of racial bias to present to a jury.
After a reversal by the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, the new trial presented the issue of whether Dulin was discriminated against as the board’s attorney for 24 years.
Pierce said that for more than a year before he was fired, the Greenwood Voters’ League called for his replacement by a black attorney.
The jury agreed that Dulin’s race was “a motivating factor” in the decision to fire him.