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Jury rejects man's claims against University of Iowa

Lawyer says he was denied a position at the College of Law because of his age.

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Posted: Monday, February 27, 2012 12:00 am

IOWA CITY -- A jury has rejected a Michigan lawyer's claims that the University of Iowa's law school denied him a faculty position because it found him too old, siding with the school in one of three discrimination lawsuits that were making their way through the courts.

Donald Dobkin, of West Bloomfield, Mich., sued the university in 2009 when he was 56, saying he was denied a position at the College of Law because of his age. He pointed out that the law school hadn't hired a faculty member older than 40 in the previous decade.

Geoff Greenwood, a spokesman for the Iowa Attorney General's Office, which represented the university, told the Iowa City Press-Citizen for a story published Friday that his office is pleased with the verdict. Dobkin could not be reached Sunday for comment.

Dobkin had sought a position on the law school faculty and compensation for lost wages.

The law school faces two other lawsuits alleging discrimination in the school's hiring practices.

Nicholas Spaeth, a former North Dakota State Attorney General, filed an age discrimination lawsuit in federal court against the University of Iowa and five other law schools, accusing them of age discrimination for not offering him a tenure-track teaching position in 2010.

Another lawsuit brought by Teresa Wagner sues the University of Iowa and Carolyn Jones, former dean of the law school.

Wagner claims that Jones and the school violated her First Amendment rights and discriminated against her because of her conservative political beliefs and activism. Wagner applied for jobs at the law school in 2006 and 2007.

A lower court originally dismissed Wagner's lawsuit, but a federal appeals court ruled in December that the case could go forward.

© 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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