Tercero’s $13.1M judgment against TSC reduced to $1

The $13.1 million judgement former Texas Southmost College president Lily Tercero won against the college has been slashed to $1.

U.S. District Judge Fernando Rodriguez reduced the sentence in a ruling signed Thursday.

TSC fired Tercero in September of 2016 for deliberately and recklessly failing to obtain windstorm insurance, allowing TSC checks to be stamped with signatures of people who were no longer trustees and a number of other allegations.

Tercero sued the school and after a four-day jury trial, the federal jury awarded Tercero on Nov. 8 $674,878.66 for lost earnings from her breach-of-contract claim and $12.5 million for diminished earning capacity and mental anguish.

TSC appealed the ruling.

In his order Rodriguez wrote, “In the end, no evidence at trial connected the damages that the jury awarded to the procedural due process deprivation. As a result, Tercero cannot recover those damages …. Tercero has, however, prevailed on her claim that the district deprived her of due process, and the court has found that sufficient evidence supports the jury’s verdict on that claim. As a result, she is entitled to nominal damages on this cause of action.”