In the wake of the Recording Academy placing its president and CEO Deborah Dugan on administrative leave, Dugan has hired a prominent litigation attorney to defend her.
Only ten days prior to the Grammy Awards on January 26, the academy put Dugan on leave “effective immediately.” This was due to a “formal allegation of misconduct by a senior female member of the Recording Academy team.”
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Dugan has hired Bryan Freedman, who is promising to reveal what he and his client believe is the actual truth of the story.
Freedman said, “What has been reported is not nearly the story that needs to be told. When our ability to speak is not restrained by a 28-page contract and legal threats, we will expose what happens when you ‘step up’ at the Recording Academy, a public nonprofit.”
On August 1 of last year, Dugan took the reigns of the academy, becoming its new chief officer.
Billboard is reporting that sources inside the academy have told them that, while they could not address the specific misconduct allegations, Dugan has been a poor fit for the organization almost from the time that she took it over. This is in spite of the fact that the organization conducted a long and thorough search for a new chief.
Another source close to the academy has issued the following statement about the current situation there: “It’s heartbreaking for people who care deeply about the organization that someone they trusted to fill that position would so quickly become so at odds with the organization.”
Just a few months ago, the Recording Academy settled a lawsuit brought against it by Dana Tomarken, who is a former vice president of MusiCares and the Grammy Foundation. She accused the academy of harassment, wrongful termination and financial impropriety.