A former Google executive says he has been fired after he rejected advances from a senior female member of staff, the male executive claims in a lawsuit.
Ryan Olohan said he was groped by Tiffany Miller at an upmarket Manhattan restaurant in December 2019, alleging that she told him she knew he liked Asian women, which she is, and that her marriage lacked “spice.” Miller was not Olohan’s boss.
Miller, who is the director of Google’s programmatic media, allegedly complemented Olohan’s physique and touched his torso while they were at Fig & Olive during a company get-together, per a report by the New York Post.
Olohan, a married father of seven, claims he was promoted to managing director of food, beverages, and restaurants and joined a team that included Miller.
The former exec said he was wary of bringing up the incident to his colleagues at first because several of them were drunk at the time—and when he did, they dismissed Miller’s advances as “Tiffany being Tiffany,” according to the lawsuit, filed on Nov. 30.
Olohan, 48, then took his concerns to human resources, which did not take any action. The lawsuit stated that a representative from the department “openly admitted…that if the complaint was ‘in reverse’—a female accusing a white male of harassment—the complaint would certainly be escalated.”
Instead, Olohan claims, Miller retaliated following his complaint and reported him to HR for unspecified “microaggressions.”
A representative for Miller denied his allegations in a statement to Fortune.
“This lawsuit is a fictional account of events filled with numerous falsehoods, fabricated by a disgruntled ex-employee, who was senior to Ms. Miller at Google. Ms. Miller never made any ‘advance’ toward Mr. Olohan, which witnesses can readily corroborate. Even more disturbing is the overt sexism and racism in Mr. Olohan‘s efforts to blame others for his termination.”
In a statement to Fortune, Google defended its decision to terminate Olohan.
“This employee was terminated with cause after a thorough investigation of complaints by numerous employees,” said a Google spokesperson. “We firmly stand by our decision here and we will vigorously defend ourselves against these claims.”
Two years after the first incident, Miller allegedly reprimanded Olohan while drunk at a Google event in December 2021—a situation that escalated to the extent that colleagues recommended she sit at the other end of the table.
Miller did apologize, the lawsuit states, but “although Google was aware that Miller’s continued harassment of Olohan stemmed from his rejection of her sexual advances, it again took no action.”
A further incident occurred in April 2022 during a company social event at a karaoke bar, when Miller once again verbally attacked Olohan while drunk, mocking him and reiterating that she knew he had a preference for Asian women with the prior knowledge that his wife is Asian.
Olohan said he felt increasingly under pressure; his supervisor told him there were “obviously too many white guys” on his management team and in July he was allegedly encouraged to fire a male employee so he could be replaced by a woman.
Olohan was then fired by Google in August, after he’d spent 16 years at the company, for not being “inclusive.” He claims that Google’s Employee Investigations Team said he’d expressed favoritism toward high-performing employees, and that he was “ableist” because he’d made comments on colleagues’ “walking pace.”
The lawsuit accuses both Google and Miller of discrimination, retaliation, and fostering a hostile work environment.
Jan 30, 2023, 12:58 p.m.: This story has been updated with comment from a spokesperson for Miller.
Jan 30, 2023, 3:44 p.m.: This story has been updated with comment from Google.
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