The Webster Parish Convention and Visitors’ Bureau commission voted to fire Executive Director Lynn Dorsey.
Board attorney Steve Oxenhandler would not elaborate on the circumstances surrounding the termination; however, Dorsey had been on paid administrative leave after she live-streamed a nude video to the bureau’s Instagram account in December.
Dorsey, 61, said the incident was “an honest mistake” that was meant for her husband.
Following a four-hour closed-door hearing Monday, newly appointed commissioner, Karen Calvert, moved to fire Dorsey effective immediately for “violating the employment agreement.” Commissioner Frances Irving seconded the motion.
Prior to the vote, Commissioner Jim Huffman asked the commissioners to consider rethinking terminating Dorsey’s employment.
“I would implore all the board members to review her past performance, understand her actions were that of an individual that made a mistake and I would implore you all to vote this motion down and move forward with a lesser action, which includes probation and other discipline actions not to include termination, ” he said.
Ultimately, the commission voted to terminate Dorsey with a 3-2 vote. In favor of terminating Dorsey were commissioners Jo McCullough, Irving and Calvert, while Huffman and Nickey Patel opposed the motion. Commissioner Ty Pendergrass abstained from voting due to a conflict of interest. Board chairman Jerry Madden also abstained as the chairman only votes in the event of a tie.
“After hearing the evidence, the majority of the commission believed that Dorsey had violated her employment agreement and that they had cause to discharge her from employment,” the board’s attorney, Oxenhandler, said following the meeting.
At the time of the incident, the commission did not have a social media policy; it has since put one into place.
Dorsey’s attorney, Lydia Rhodes, said her client was disappointed in the outcome of the meeting and is considering legal action.
“She did, in fact, have a contract. And so we’re looking at our options to go to court,” Rhodes said.
Rhodes did not issue a statement on Dorsey’s behalf during or after the decision. Dorsey told members of the media she was not leaving following the closed-door hearing. However, she apparently left the meeting without notifying the media of her departure. The Press-Herald attempted to contact Dorsey via her home landline to provide her the opportunity to issue a statement. When the attempt was unsuccessful, the Press-Herald attempted to call and text her on the cellphone number, which she utilized as director, but the call went to voicemail. There was also no response to the text.
Dorsey now has the option to have a post-employment hearing with the board within one week of her termination.