Ricketts fires administrative services director for allowing bullying, harassment in agency

Ricketts fires administrative services director for allowing bullying, harassment in agency
The Nebraska State Office Building in Lincoln. (ELISABETH REINKORDT/NDE)

LINCOLN — Gov. Pete Ricketts fired the state’s director of administrative services Thursday for failing to take action against a problem employee.

The governor announced the action against Byron Diamond during a press conference call.

He said he terminated Diamond because the director had not dealt with a temporary employee who had been bullying, sexually harassing and discriminating against women in the workplace. The temporary employee also was fired Thursday.

Ricketts said Diamond had tried to resign but he refused to accept the resignation.

“This was something that was ongoing for a while and it was not just about being incompetent,” the governor said. “It was about the type of work environment … and because he consistently failed to take action when he was counseled to take action.”

Diamond was named director of the Nebraska Department of Administrative Services in March 2015. He is a U.S. Army veteran who had previously worked as executive director of logistics for the Nebraska Military Department.

DAS contains a variety of departments that serve state government, from personnel and purchasing, to building services and technology.

Ricketts said Ed Toner, now the state’s chief information officer, will take on the acting DAS director job as well as his own.

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