Yahoo Executive Sued for Sexual Harassment and Wrongful Termination

Nan Shi, a principal software engineer for Yahoo filed against Maria Zhang, senior director of engineering for Yahoo Mobile on July 8th. The complaint was filed in Santa Clara Superior Court in San Jose, California. According to the complaint Maria Zhang, the Yahoo executive, sexually harassed a woman who worked under her, Nan Shi.

Nan Shi worked for Yahoo since February 2013. She alleges that Zhang coerced her into engaging in sexual acts on numerous occasions in Sunnyvale, California with promises of a “bright future” dependent upon her agreement to participate. Nan Shi is seeking monetary and punitive damages. Yahoo is also named as a defendant in the suit. A representative for Yahoo advised that they believe there is no basis for the claims made by Nan Shi and that Maria Zhang is an exemplary Yahoo executive. They intend to fight the allegations and clear her name.  

Zhang’s mobile company, Alike, was acquired by Yahoo in 2013. She had previously worked with Microsoft and Zillow. In the complaint filed, Shi accuses Zhang of downgrading her performance reviews unfairly. Further accusations are aimed at the Yahoo human resources department personnel who Shi claims refused to conduct an investigation when she complained about advances being made by her direct supervisor.  According to Shi, instead of conducting an investigation into the matter as she requested, they put her on unpaid leave and eventually terminated her from the company.

For more information on sexual harassment in the work place or wrongful termination suits contact Blumenthal, Nordrehaug & Bhowmik.