SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — A jury has found the Thomas Keller Restaurant Group not guilty of pregnancy discrimination.
Wednesday's verdict exonerates the famous chef and his acclaimed restaurants — Per Se in New York and the French Laundry in California — of wrongdoing alleged by former employee Vanessa Scott-Allen.
Scott-Allen worked at Per Se for five years, rising to the highest server position of captain, before requesting a transfer to the Napa Valley restaurant. She claimed she was ultimately let go after telling her bosses she was pregnant. She was seeking more than $1 million in damages.
The French Laundry said in a statement it was pleased with the jury's decision and "disappointed to see lawyers seeking an exorbitant sum for erroneous claims."
Scott-Allen's lawyers say they plan to appeal.