Ellen Pao Says Kleiner Perkins Has Now Fired Her
Ellen Pao, the Kleiner Perkins partner who sued her own firm for gender discrimination and retaliation in May, has been fired, she said late Tuesday night.
In an update to a previous answer she had left on Q&A site Quora, Pao wrote, “I have been terminated from my job at KPCB. On Monday afternoon, senior management told me to clean out my office, leave, and not come back.”
Reached this evening, a Kleiner Perkins spokeswoman said she had no comment, but promised to get an answer about Pao’s employment status at the firm as soon as possible.
Update. Kleiner Perkins provided a comment:
Ms. Pao’s Quora post is misleading. She remains an employee of the firm. Because of long standing issues having no relationship or bearing on the litigation, Kleiner approached Ms. Pao to facilitate her transition, over an extended period of time, out of the firm. The proposed terms, that did not require Ms. Pao to waive any legal rights or claims, are generous, fair and intended to support Ms. Pao in a successful career transition.
Pao also replied to a Facebook message with a “no comment” and referral to her lawyer.
The Quora update came through at 10:49 p.m. PT on Monday, and is attached to Pao’s verified account. Previously, Pao had posted that she continued to work at Kleiner Perkins as the legal case progressed.
That was an awkward arrangement for all involved, but one where any further negative action toward Pao would reflect poorly on the venture firm. And that’s what appears to have happened now, at least according to Pao.
This latest update was appended to a Quora entry, for which the question is “Did Ellen Pao quit KPCB after the lawsuit?” and Pao’s full answer is:
No, and I don’t plan to quit.
Update: I have been terminated from my job at KPCB. On Monday afternoon, senior management told me to clean out my office, leave, and not come back.
Thank you, Quora community, for your support.
Pao had said in her lawsuit that she suffered from harassment at the firm by multiple partners, that the firm did not address her complaints about the matter, and that she was shut out of promotions and other opportunities because of her gender. Kleiner Perkins replied that Pao’s own performance kept her from advancing at the firm and that her claims had no merit.
The latest action in the case was a judge denying Kleiner’s repeated efforts to send the case to arbitration.