Former journalism professor files lawsuit against Butler

Loni Smith McKown was a journalism professor in the College of Communication until spring 2017.


Loni Smith McKown, former Butler journalism professor, filed a lawsuit against Butler University for alleged discrimination.

She was a professor in the College of Communication from 2010 to spring 2017. McKown also served as the Collegian adviser for five years until she was removed from the position in September 2015.

According to an article in the Indianapolis Business Journal, “the lawsuit says that, on Sept. 20, 2015, McKown complained to Butler’s Human Resources Department, saying she believed [then CCOM Dean Gary] Edgerton removed her from the position because he was targeting her gender, age and religion.”

She contacted HR again in mid-October of that year, and filed an internal grievance with Butler two months later. According to the lawsuit, McKown said she was targeted “because of her age, gender, and religion.”

According to the IBJ, Butler has not filed a response to the lawsuit yet. A university spokesperson said Butler is “not going to comment on pending litigation.”

The Collegian will continue to report on this story as we gather more information.