Lawsuit: AOL's CEO Fired Worker When She Lost 2 Babies

Tim Armstrong's issues with pregnant employees go back to 2005

By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff

Posted Feb 10, 2014 6:07 PM CST

(Newser) – Does AOL CEO Tim Armstrong have an issue with pregnant employees? Well, that's what Valleywag is wondering. To recap, Armstrong caused a stir last week by shifting the company's 401(K) payment schedule to a year-end lump sum—because, he said, AOL has had to pay big bucks to "two AOL-ers that had distressed babies." He undid the changes Saturday amid a shockwave of bad press, but it seems Armstrong's issues with pregnancy go back the days when he was Google's VP of national sales.

In a 2005 lawsuit, former Google worker Christina Elwell alleged that Armstrong fired her after medical issues with a pregnancy prevented her from traveling for a "few weeks." Armstrong had promoted her to a top sales-director position and publicly praised her work, but in the month she lost two unborn children, Armstrong demoted her. He then fired her and rehired her for a lower-level position that she hated, and she was discharged from Google, according to the suit, the Wall Street Journal reports. Elwell apparently got a decent settlement from the company via arbitration that left both parties unable to discuss the matter publicly. See her lawsuit at Valleywag.

In this Friday, April 22 2011 photo, AOL CEO Tim Armstrong speaks during an interview with The Associated Press at AOL headquarters in New York.
In this Friday, April 22 2011 photo, AOL CEO Tim Armstrong speaks during an interview with The Associated Press at AOL headquarters in New York.   (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)
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