Fired elections director sues New Hanover County, state elections board is your source for free news and information in the Wilmington area.

Elections Director Marvin McFadyen is seen through a door window listening to board members during the closed session. Photo by Jonathan Spiers.
Former New Hanover County elections director Marvin McFadyen. Port City Daily file photo.

Marvin McFadyen wants his job back.

The former director of the New Hanover County elections department has sued New Hanover County, the New Hanover County Board of Elections and the N.C. Board of Elections for his February termination, claiming his due process and other constitutional rights were violated. In his suit, he asked to be reinstated to his post and for back pay.

In January, the New Hanover County elections board voted 2-1 to submit the petition and remove McFadyen from the elections office. A deputy director of the North Carolina Board of Elections granted a petition to remove McFadyen in February. He appealed that decision, but his termination stood.

The 44-page petition, which was accompanied by 61 pages of supporting material, detailed the board’s reasons for seeking the termination, including a lack of confidence in McFadyen’s abilities as director, alleged failures by McFadyen to perform his duties and manage others, and incidents such as his arrest in November 2014 on a misdemeanor charge of assault on a female. The charge has since been dismissed.

John Ferrante, chairman of the county elections board, who authored the petition and voted in favor of it along with Marlene Mitchell—fellow board member Tannis Nelson opposed—said he agreed with the state’s decision and wished the petition had not been necessary.

In his lawsuit, McFadyen claims the petition should not have been released to the public.

“Mr. McFadyen was not afforded a meaningful opportunity to respond to any allegations against him on Jan. 7, or to respond to the proposed action to either force his resignation or conduct a personal and professional hatchet job in the proverbial public square,” the lawsuit states.

The lawsuit has not been answered by any of the named defendants.

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