PITTSBURGH – An ex-sales executive for the Hilton hotel chain alleges he was discriminated against and unlawfully terminated from his employment, purely on the basis of his older age.

Anthony Nagota of Pittsburgh filed suit on Jan. 10 in the Allegheny County Court of Common Pleas, versus Prospera Hospitality, also of Pittsburgh.

According to the lawsuit, Nagota was employed with the defendant from January 2015 until his termination on June 1, 2017, and at the time of the complaint’s filing, was 59 years old.

Nagota originally worked as a Senior Sales Manager for the DoubleTree Hotel in Mars, and was the oldest manager employed there and for the defendant’s hotel chain, plus the oldest employee in general, outside of two van drivers, he says.

In 2016, Nagota applied for an internal transfer to the Hilton Garden Inn, located near Pittsburgh International Airport. The transfer request was denied in January 2017 and the position was instead filled by a younger, less-qualified employee with less experience, the suit states.

Similarly, the same circumstance transpired when he applied for another transfer, this time for the position of Senior Sales Manager at the Downtown Pittsburgh DoubleTree Hotel that was managed and staffed by the defendant, the suit says.

On June 1, 2017, the suit states the defendant terminated Nagota’s employment without adequate explanation. That same day, Nagota says he inquired to his supervisor Rick Yarosz as to the reasons for his termination, but Yarosz refused to provide any.

“One proffered reason was that plaintiff’s sales were inadequate. However, plaintiff obtained offers for over 8,000 thousand room nights from the oil and gas industry, which defendant refused to accept. Subsequent to plaintiff’s termination, plaintiff was informed and therefore believes that defendant began to accept sales under the terms obtained by plaintiff with the oil and gas industry, while plaintiff was still employed by defendant. Plaintiff believes and therefore avers that defendant has fired employees over the age of 40 in addition to himself,” the complaint reads.

As a result, Nagota alleges he suffered lost income, employment benefits, financial security, damage to his reputation, embarrassment, shame and emotional distress, diminution in enjoyment of life and the ability to earn wages, plus incurred attorney’s fees and costs.

For violation of the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, Pennsylvania Human Relations Act, wrongful discharge and breach of contract, the plaintiff is seeking damages in excess of $35,000, exclusive of interests, costs and other damages as listed: A declaratory judgment that the defendant’s acts are unlawful discriminatory practices; a permanent injunction prohibiting the defendant from retaliating against employees on the basis of age; the immediate assignment of the plaintiff to a position that he would now have occupied had it not been for the acts of the defendant and foreclosure of promotional opportunities; an award of compensation for all earnings and other benefits related thereto; pre-judgment interest on back pay; compensatory damages; punitive damages; costs including reasonable attorney’s fees and expert fees, in addition to a trial by jury.

The plaintiff is represented by David M. Kobylinski and Peter T. Kobylinski of Praetorian Law Group, in Pittsburgh.

Allegheny County Court of Common Pleas case GD-18-000373

From the Pennsylvania Record: Reach Courts Reporter Nicholas Malfitano at nickpennrecord@gmail.com

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