Marquette rescinds offer to lesbian sociologist

Thu. May 6, 2010 12:00 AM by News Staff

Milwaukee-based university denies sexuality was the reason

Milwaukee, WI - Marquette University in Milwaukee has rescinded a job offer made to a sociologist who is a lesbian.

Marquette had asked Jodi O'Brien of be the dean of the College of Arts and Sciences. O'Brien currently teaches at Seattle University. She writes frequently on sexuality and LGBT issues.

Marquette insists their change of heart was based on a closer examination of O'Brien's published work, not on her sexuality.

"We found some strongly negative statements about marriage and family," Marquette President Rev. Robert Wild told the New York Times.

Marquette is a Roman Catholic university founded by Jesuits.

O'Brien's work includes articles like "Complicating Homophobia" and "Queer Tensions." She is currently the chair of the sociology department at Seattle University.

The president now says they offered the job to O'Brien "prematurely."

In an email, O'Brien told the New York Times that she is "stunned."

On Thursday night, hundreds of students protested outside the school's annual faculty dinner.

The school is now starting their search for a dean from scratch.