HR employee fired for threatening supervisor

She went on a tirade criticizing her co-workers, as indicated by a termination report the Register obtained through a public records request.
Andy Ouriel
May 12, 2014


Erie County officials fired a human resources employee for threatening, ridiculing and undermining her supervisor, according to a termination report.

In early April, Dena Heyman, who earned about $12.40 an hour, went on a tirade criticizing her co-workers, as indicated by a termination report the Register obtained through a public records request. She went on paid leave for about a month and was then fired by Erie County commissioners on Thursday.

The report indicates Heyman:
•Called the three county commissioners “idiots”
•Accused her supervisor of being incompetent to the point where the person couldn’t find a meeting room or buy water.
•Claimed her supervisor wouldn’t help anyone for 5 cents an hour.
•Blamed others for not doing work assigned to her.

Among the office workplace rules she reportedly violated are insubordination; abuse of or actions toward other employees that would disrupt office efficiencies; derogatory remarks; failure to cooperate; and verbal or physical assault on other employees. “Her actions were against our county policies,” Erie County administrator Pete Daniel said. “The nature of these infractions were serious enough for us to consider relieving her of her duties as a county employee”



Was she telling the truth? hmmmmmmmmmm

JMOP's picture

Lol rbenn, that was my first thought.


She probably was telling the truth. It's awful that people have to keep their mouths shut to keep their jobs, but that's reality. There are way too many supervisors that should not be supervisors and people doing other people's work while those people get credit for it. And yes, many are idiots. She apparently could not take it any longer and told them off. Unfortunately, she will be the one to suffer. You have to give her credit for not shooting them though!


Well said! She was probably right! I was once told "The truth shall set you free." Guess they were right, free from employment.

I hate HR people and they are useless in my opinion so one less HR person in the world is great.


Sounds like an honest description of county workers. Should give her a raise.


I agree!

Julie R.

"Sounds like an honest description of county workers. Should give her a raise."

That was tooooo funny!


Ha! Imagine being reprimanded over the way you walk on the job in a certain county department, and being told you 'don't have enthusiasm' when told to do something.


lol yeah, that describes most government employees


Please tell me where this women is from or what town she lives in? I am wonder if it who I think she is...


I am wonder if it who I think she is?

Julie R.

Why does it say there was physical assault on other employees? All I see here are verbal insults about her supervisor & the 3 county commissioners ..... and how do we know she didn't have good reason to make them?

seriously 1137

LOL ITS TRUE! IT'S ALL TRUE! Trust me she will feel like a million pounds of weight lifted off her shoulder being out of there!!


I agree. I worked with some similar type officials who 1. did not properly train me for the job and 2. expected me to do their job for them and 3. be on call when the lifer called in sick. Glad I no longer work there!

JMOP's picture

When you're the only one busting your butt while working, this is exactly the thoughts many of us have.


In a perfect world there will be good jobs, credit given where it is due and no malicious backstabbing and lies in the workplace. LMFAO!


"Obtained thru a public records request" is a joke. Andy just prints what King Patrick puts in his weekly new release. Whatever news that suites Pat gets published word for word. This lady just got so fed up she went over the edge.


Trust me...there is a whole other side to these accusations against Dena. I recently left that office due to the management style of the supervisor who trumped up these charges. Now with Dena gone, half of her staff left as a direct result of her actions. You'd think someone would wonder about that. Justice was not served.


The management style of top Erie County management is the same as the bully at school. Certain managers think they are above the policies but they are the first to break the rules. Nancy Ostrander is not professional and the County Administrator is not professional. This should have been resolved within the grievance time based on the personnel policies. Dena is one the kindest persons I have ever known. Andy you should do some more public records requests to get the other side of the story.


If you know anything about this case, do the right thing and report it. Someone's career is on the line.


I have worked with Dena and know first hand what a kind-hearted, competent worker she is. Dena is always willing to go the extra mile at work or in helping anyone, anywhere! Anyone who knows her can attest to her sweet character. There are always two sides to every story. Unfortunately Dena's reputation has been irrevocably tainted by this one-sided article regarding many falsehoods. As stated in the HR report: The Wellness Coordinator Dena Heyman shined in design, implementation, and promotion of the wellness program which is setting the standard for Erie County, if not for the state. Trust me, there is more to this story!


Wow something is fishy. Anyone who as ever met this employee knows she is a kind hearted women, hard worker and this does not sound like her at all. Maybe the Register should get both sides of the story. If you even bother to google the HR Supervisors name, Nancy Ostrander you will find she had high praise for this employee in her 2012 Annual report. Better yet here's the link: Sorry to think this employee's good name and reputation is being hurt when Ostrander is the incompetent one. Please look further into this!


Why is one county employees termination publicized but not others?


Good point "Commenter" And where are the "threats'? Sounds like just some ones words but no threats... threats to do what? Did anyone hear the employee say this stuff? Did she have a history of bad behavior? I can actually answer that and it is "NO". Time to look at the real facts! The bad call was hiring a supervisor who doesn't do her job. At least one employee wasn't afraid to speak the truth.


Have to say this article is very misleading. There is a lot that sounds very fishy about this. Those of you that know these people should stand up and do the right thing, even if it means calling the county commissioners. That's what I plan to do.


Two Commissioners are millionaires. The other knows what HR director really did. HR director rubs elbows with a Commissioner. Friends should not hire friends. This HR director is not the same person from one minute to the next. She needs to go back to Lorain library and leave Erie County. Nancy, we know the real story. You need to live with yourself and your other personalities. Skipper52 you ask for the full story and see what falsehoods you get. The top managers create stories to pick on certain employees. This employee did no wrong.


Definition of Credibility: is the quality, capability, or power to elicit belief or a capacity for belief. It may also refer to someone's reputation for truthfulness. Credibility of testimony is usually supported by other substantiating evidence, which you have none.

Just curious Nancy, what do you do all day. I would like to see some substantiating evidence to support your answer. Again, you have none.


Credibility, yes let's talk about that. Seems these supervisors can break their own rules to think they can protect their own reputation. Employees know that many supervisors are not credible. Commissioners, your Administrator who stated "against our county policies" in the article, you should check out the workplace rules he and Nancy break each and every day. Shame on you Commissioners for accepting one-sided evidence.