Too Sexy for Citibank?

Debrahlee Lorenzana claims she was fired from Citibank for being too sexy.

A Latina lovely says her bosses at Citigroup canned her for flaunting her ample assets at a midtown bank.

Dangerously curvy Debrahlee Lorenzana contends her ex-bosses at Citibank in the Chrysler Building banned her from wearing sexy outfits or heels deemed “too distracting” for male coworkers.

“I can’t help it that I have curves,” Lorenzana told the Daily News.   “And I’m not going to go eat and gain 50 or 100 pounds because my job wants me to be the same size as everyone else.”

The 33-year-old Queens woman filed suit in Manhattan Supreme Court, claiming she was ordered to lay off turtlenecks, pencil skirts and fitted suits because clingy clothes were drawing too much attention in the workplace.

“Debrahlee Lorenzana would be very attractive in a burka,” said her lawyer Jack Tuckner, of Tuckner Sipser Weinstock & Sipser.

Lorenzana, who is 5-feet-6 and 125 pounds, defended her fashion choices, saying she never flashed too much skin and dressed professionally, not provocatively.  “Never did I ever show cleavage,” the divorced single mom said. “I like fashion, but I always dressed professionally.”

Lorenzana was hired as a business banking officer at Citi’s Chrysler branch in September 2008 and transferred in July 2009 to a Rockefeller Center branch.  The suit claims she was moved to an out-of-the-way spot where she couldn’t lure in new clients as retaliation for her complaints about sexual harassment. A month later she was fired.

“All it came down to was, ‘We don’t want to deal with you, because you’re just too good looking,'” Tuckner said.

In a statement, Citigroup said the suit is “without merit,” but declined to discuss Lorenzana’s performance. “Citi is committed to fostering a culture of inclusion and providing a respectful environment in the workplace,” the statement read.

Lorenzana, who works for another financial institution, said she’s had to face harassment her entire life because of a body that drives men wild.  “I get harassed in the supermarket with my son just wearing sweatpants with my hair in a ponytail,” she said. “I can’t help how I look.”

She’s doubtless a very beautiful woman with a nice physique.  But methinks something else is going on here:  She’s not that hot.   Surely, there are hundreds of similarly attractive women in Manhattan who manage to get through the workday on a regular basis.

The Daily News has helpfully posted a photo gallery titled “Debrahlee Lorenzana: Too sexy to work at Citibank?”  The pics, entirely safe for work (unless, perhaps, you’re at Citibank) do nothing to dissuade me from my view that she’s below the attractiveness threshold that should shut down the operations of a major corporation.

FILED UNDER: General,
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.

Comments

  1. john personna says:

    I haven’t seen her walk in her pencil skirt … let alone open up the bottom file drawer, but I’d think it would come down to whether she can document demands by her supervisors, and how (un)reasonable those demands were.

  2. John Burgess says:

    Maybe it was because the queue of customers in front of her window was getting to be a problem? I’d certainly choose to frequent her service.

  3. john personna says:

    (Remember when Lucille Ball vamped Ernie Ford? Maybe it’s like that.)

  4. PD Shaw says:

    One thing I find decidedly unattractive is people talking on and on about how attractive they are and how they are made to suffer for it.

    Hypocritically speaking, of course.

  5. Herb says:

    I beg to differ. She really is that hot.

    Any word on whether her ex-bosses were women?

  6. Wayne says:

    She is good looking but nothing out of the ordinary. I have seen much hotter women at my bank.

    I have a feeling it had more to do with her attitude than her looks. “I’m too sexy for my shirt” etc. She seems very full of herself. She probably saw sexual harassment in every shadow as many people who are full of themselves do.

    The phenomenon doesn’t only occur with women. Everyone probably knows guys who think every woman is after them. “She smiled at me. She wants me” B.S.

  7. James H says:

    If you read beyond the headline-grabbing “too sexy for work” junk, you’ll find some issues of concern regarding work assignments and training.

  8. Wayne says:

    “All it came down to was, ‘We don’t want to deal with you, because you’re just too good looking,’” Tuckner said.

    Pretty much sums it up for her line of thinking. IMO she was probably a pain in the ass and that is what got her fired.

  9. The Q says:

    I beg to differ. We had a receptionist who was very voluptuous and it was noticeable, but she
    didn’t do anything to accentuate it, but there were definitely complaints (not from me) from some in the office.

    Good point about whether there were other females who may have been jealous and complained.

  10. The Fury says:

    I’m convinced. The men at her work are gay.

  11. Franklin says:

    We don’t have nearly enough information here to decide whether she was wrongfully terminated.

    For example, how does she look in a bikini?

  12. John Burgess says:

    I think a bikini would be too obstructive to enable fair judging.

  13. Michael Reynolds says:

    I’m too sexy to be self-employed.

  14. DavidL says:

    I think the lady is on an ego trip. She doesn’t like what she sees in the mirror and wants somebody to tell her she not a fat chick.

  15. ExHusband says:

    She was a pain in the ass. Now you know everthing you need to know.

  16. LarryBoy says:

    Where is Larry Flynt when you need him!