Sexual harassment of HR director blamed for sudden resignation

by Ben Abbott11 Aug 2015
“You will enjoy.”
So read one text from Albuquerque’s Game and Fish Department director Jim Lane to the agency’s then-HR director Sonya Quintana back in 2013.
Not long after, the New Mexico city’s Game Commission voted unanimously to accept Lane’s resignation, in what was an abrupt and unexplained departure.
However, the Albuquerque Journal has exposed documents purporting to show that Albuquerque’s Governor, Susana Martinez, received a letter from an attorney in October 2013 accusing Lane of sexually harassing Quintana.
The HR director ‘s attorney accused Lane of making repeated sexual overtures, reports the paper, both in person and via cellphone text messages.
One evening, Quintana received a barrage of 22 text messages at an offsite meeting at a bar between 11:45pm and 3:59pm, including the texts: ‘I really want to wake up with you tomorrow’ and ‘You will enjoy’.
They also included the texts: ‘I am infatuatated [sic]’, and ‘I know 2 things. You are awake. And. We need some face time.’ Others included an admission: ‘These texts could sink me’, and ‘I have been waiting for this for 2 plus years’.
Lane also appears to have been upset by Quintana’s refusal to respond that night, sending her the text: ‘You totally blew me off. Crushed.’
The letter obtained by the Albuquerque Journal claims Lane retaliated against Quintana by making her work at the agency intolerable, threatening to have her “crushed” and forcing her to take leave from Game and Fish.
A settlement deal was reached in early 2014, which saw the department and the state risk management division pay out $65,000 to settle the claims.
Quintana was also forced to leave from her HR role as part of the settlement deal, though she was able to find work at Santa Fe County.
Albuquerque Journal reports Lane landed a $92,000 job in March as assistant commissioner for surface and special projects at the State Land Office, but was unable to be reached for comment on the story.
The letter further details a number of harassing remarks made by Lane, as well as claiming there was a pattern of derogatory behavior towards women.


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