The Norman Transcript

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December 31, 2012

Celebrate ‘Sammy Awards’ winners

(Continued)

NORMAN —

The world’s worst boss.

Jackie Bruscia was not only Debbie Stevens’ boss at the Atlantic Automotive Group in West Islip on Long Island, they were pals — at least that’s what Stevens, 49, thought.

That’s why when Bruscia, 61, needed a kidney transplant, Stevens went to the extraordinary measure of donating one of her kidneys. Since they weren’t a perfect medical match, reported the New York Post, Stevens donated her left kidney to the national pool, helping Bruscia get a transplant sooner than she might have otherwise.

And they all lived happily ever after … right up until Bruscia fired Stevens.

Well, actually, not even that long.

“Something was very different when I got back,” Stevens said. “I don’t have words strong enough or large enough to describe her treatment of me. Screaming at me about things I never did, carrying on to the point where she wouldn’t even let me leave my desk. It was constant, constant screaming.”

“I will always be grateful that she gave me a kidney,” Bruscia told 1010 WINS-AM radio. “I have nothing bad to say about her. I will always be grateful to her — she did a wonderful thing for me.”

Wonderful or not, Stevens is out of a job.

“You hate me so much, and I’m so despicable,” cried Stevens, “give me my kidney back!”

In October, the New York State Division on Human Rights ruled that Stevens had been unjustly fired, noting that there was “probable cause” that the dealership engaged in a discriminatory practice because of the transplant, and paved the way for Stevens’ $15 million lawsuit against Bruscia and the company.

Stevens may well get her pound of flesh, but Bruscia, at last report, is keeping the kidney.

Sam Pollak is the editor of The Daily Star in Oneonta, N.Y.

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