The dapper CEO's detailed response: Scientology wasn't forced on disgruntled employee - 2016-08-09
On Friday, we told you about Vick Tipnes, CEO and founder of Blackstone Medical Services in Tampa, who is being sued by a man named David Bunting. According to the complaint filed by Bunting in federal court, Tipnes pushed him to get involved in Scientology, and threatened him with "financial penalties" if he didn't comply. Bunting refused, and claims that he was fired as a result.
Before we filed that story, we called Blackstone Medical and asked to speak with Tipnes. We were told he was in a meeting, and we left a message. Tipnes hasn't called us back. But we did hear from Vick's attorney, Hunter Chamberlin, who told us that Tipnes vigorously denies the allegations in Bunting's lawsuit.
Before he filed his lawsuit, Bunting filed a discrimination claim with the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Chamberlin then filed a detailed response, describing Bunting not as a victim of religious discrimination, but as a disgruntled former employee who had failed to live up to expectations. Not only did Tipnes say he had not forced Scientology on Bunting, but his response to the EEOC included affidavits from twelve Blackstone Medical employees who all said Tipnes had never brought up Scientology with them.