CALIFORNIA – Former HVL golf pro awarded $2 million in damages
SAN FRANCISCO >> Earlier this month, after eight full days of proceedings, a jury unanimously awarded Wayne Clark a total of $2 million in a defamation of character case against the Hidden Valley Lake Association.
The Northern California District Court, located in San Francisco, was the platform for the court proceedings. Clark was the Golf Pro at HVLA, until he was fired by General Manager, Cindy Spears April 15, 2015.
Because Clark was hired under “at-will” employment, he sued the HVLA not for wrongful termination, but for defamation of character.
There had been several derogatory postings on the Hidden Valley Lake Forum Facebook Page after the firing of Clark — posted, the court said, by Michelle Wade, a member of HVLA.
Wade testified that all of this information came from rumors that she was hearing, which she referred to as a “Little Birdie.”
Julie Vonada, the Human Resource Director at HVLA, testified Spears was “feeding” information to Wade.
The Facebook postings were brought into the trial and during the proceedings, Wayne Clark’s Attorney Victor C. Thuesen directly read some of the posts. Read more: