Am I Being Bullied?by Helene Hill on 11/27/13
Have I been and am I being bullied?
1. After the first Campus Committee on Research Integrity meets in 2001, I am relieved of my administrative appointment. Howell is named head of the Division of Radiation Research and is appointed my supervisor. He calls me into his office and tells me he does not want to have anything more to do with me.
2. At about that time, my Chairman, Dr Stephen Baker, in an unprecedented and demeaning move, sends email to all the members of the department that copies a letter sent to Howell stating the above changes in the department administration.
3. Howell in retaliation changes the locks to the Division laboratories and reassigns the keys, thereby locking me out of the laboratory that contains shared equipment (this is later countermanded by the administration).
4.) I am assigned to share a small laboratory with Dr Azzam. At the time, I have a small amount of private funding and am doing my own research. From time to time, Azzam removes my equipment from the laboratory and puts it into storage in a place that is never revealed nor made accessible to me. Eventually, I am left with 2 book boxes of assorted electrophoresis equipment and some pipet tips (no pipettors), down from earlier times: a 900 sq ft office and laboratory suite, students, a post-doc and a technician. What was taken away from me? Microscopes: phase contrast, fluorescence, inverted, upright, dissecting; electrophoresis apparatus: horizontal, vertical, pulse-field, iso-electric focusing, pumps, concentrators, power supply, trans-illuminator, pipettors, tips, etc, etc.
5.) For a time, I work with Azzam. He learns that I have reported to the ORI. He is very angry. He approaches and berates me, uses threatening language. We go our separate ways.
5.) Eventually, the Division moves to the new Cancer Center building. I am left behind in my small office. I find a place to work in a near-by lab in the Pediatrics Department where I do PCR to quantify DNA damage to mitochondria. I am never again invited to Radiation Research Division meetings and I am never introduced to any new members of the Division. I am, effectively, shunned.
6.) Time passes. The qui tam case is lost. Our attempts to publish are thwarted. I find I can pinpoint in the discovery materials the experimental results represented in some of the graphs in the 8 publications co-authored by Bishayee and Howell. I send a letter (qv) on July 10, 2013 to the editor of Micron regarding the experiments that back up the data reported in Figure 2 of that paper (qv). Copies to the editorial board and others, as appropriate (qv). I receive a letter (qv) from Dean Johnson, the Dean of our medical school, telling me “to cease and desist” or I will be dismissed. I turn to the AAUP, our faculty union, for help. I respond to the Dean (qv). I am told that the AAUP will support me if I am fired as a result of publishing a “peer-reviewed” paper. We will keep trying.
7.) I have my annual evaluation with Dr Baker, my chairman, in September. He tells me he was not shown the letter that I received from the Dean. Why not??
8.) I do not “cease and desist”.