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Key lawyer dies before equal pay case is heard - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Key lawyer dies before equal pay case is heard

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Cheryl Hanna Cheryl Hanna
MONTPELIER, Vt. - Oral arguments in an equal pay case went on as scheduled Wednesday, despite the absence of a key figure.

Cheryl Hanna, who was deeply involved in the case from the start and was to be one of the three attorneys arguing on behalf of the plaintiffs, passed away earlier this week.

The three state employees claim they were paid less than a male counterpart for the same work.

Hanna brought the case to the attention of the Vermont Commission on Women and wrote the organization's amicus brief in the case, which she would have presented Wednesday.

"I don't know if there are words to express the loss of not having her here today," said Cary Brown of the Vermont Commission on Women. "There's certainly other people doing this kind of work, but without Cheryl we're all really at a loss."

"Cheryl Hanna was an inspiration to all of us practicing in this area of the law. An articulate, tireless, brilliant advocate for pay equity and gender equity," said Emily Jan Joselson, the lawyer for the plaintiffs in the case. "It's obviously very difficult to move on without her, but we were all inspired by her brilliance and dedication and feel that she's blessing this endeavor."

Hanna died at her Burlington home Sunday. Police have not released any details about what happened, but say they do not suspect foul play.

Vermont Law School referred to her passing as an "untimely death."

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