Dr. Raeanne Napoleon legal funds

$15,000 goal

Campaign created 5 months ago
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Created April 8, 2018
Please help SBCC Chemistry professor Dr. Raeanne Napoleon defray the legal expenses that she has incurred in defending herself against a defamation claim by Dr. Michael Shermer, author of Heavens on Earth and recent SBCC speaker.


On the day that Dr. Shermer was scheduled to speak at Santa Barbara City College, Dr. Napoleon sent an all-campus email that forwarded mainstream newspaper articles written in 2014 about allegations of sexual assault and sexual harassment against Dr. Shermer. Her purpose was not to prevent Dr. Shermer from speaking, but rather to warn women attending the talk to be careful of their safety.


In response, Dr. Shermer sent a letter, forwarded by another SBCC faculty member, via all-campus email that accused Dr. Napoleon of libel and defamation and threatened her with a restraining order. In addition, he has made a series of threatening legal demands that have forced Rae to retain an attorney.


A community college professor, Rae has already spent approximately $5,000 responding to his legal threats. Rae estimates that her total legal bill may be as high as $15,000 (although it could be higher). The financial strain has only exacerbated an already stressful situation for her and her family.


Any amount that you can contribute – no matter how small – to help defray her legal expenses would be greatly appreciated.


Any funds raised over and above the cost of Rae’s legal defense will be donated to Times Up!, a legal defense fund that assists women in fighting sexual assault and sexual harassment in the workplace.


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Hi Everyone,

This is a long, rambling message. I do hope you take a few moments to read it.

First-please know that I even though I consider myself pretty tech savvy, I have just now figured out how to message all of you and update through this page. I didn't have the mental space to even poke around and figure out how GoFundMe's services work previously, so here I am now MONTHS later. My apologies for that.

Second-sincerely-every single one of you is awesome. Please know that. With no hesitation, you donate funds for my legal defense. And trust me when I say that the act of donation, rather than the donations themselves, were what lifted me up. It was certainly nice to know that so many of you were willing to help me pay the bills and that helped me sleep at night, but bigger than that it meant that you were supporting me and believed in me and for that I am really grateful.

To put it simply: My life got HARD after the legal threats came and maybe not for the reasons that are obvious or on the surface. Yes-receiving legal threats is stressful and thinking about fighting a fight in that way was a burden-but really it was bigger than a court case for me. I don't want to spend the time here detailing the details of the stress or the battle, but it was and is much, much bigger than some dude with his non-sense threats of defamation, really. I'd just ramble and carry on, so I'll spare you. If interested, let's get coffee and I'll talk your ear off about it all. But please know that your donations for a legal defense meant that I knew you were willing to fight all of the fights with me, the apparent ones and the less apparent ones.

So where are things now?

Well-my legal funds have been taken care of. My lawyer's fees were quite high, even though there was never no real legal threat and we never even made it in front of a judge. My lawyer was stellar and I'm so glad I had her and she was worth every penny. But the good news is-the fees that I accumulated have been taken care of. Hooray for that!

I go back to work officially next week. And if I were being honest with you, I'm pretty freaking scared and anxious to do so. There's a lot of baggage for me right now and I'm still trying to work through everything that has happened in the last couple of months, but I've spent some time this summer trying to do just that. Here's hoping it will be enough. I look forward to reinvesting myself in the student centered spaces that really mean something to me. And maybe getting back to surfing, or cycling, or crocheting!

Lastly-and the reason for this lengthly and rambling message: please expect a refund for your generous donation in about two weeks. Previously, it was offered in the original posting that excess donations were going to Times Up, but knowing that I, personally, didn't need any of the donations after a few months of fighting for them to be taken care of, I thought it was best to just refund everyone. If you feel compelled, please consider donating to Times Up: https://www.timesupnow.com/

Thanks again-from the deep down parts of me that will remember your unwavering support for me in this crazy, crazy time.

Your friend, Rae
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$15,000 goal

Campaign created 5 months ago
No Longer Accepting Donations
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Created April 8, 2018
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