I risked my life serving my country in Iraq… but now I’ve lost my job at a bank because I’m white

A white, male Iraq war veteran is suing a top U.S. bank, saying he was sidelined in favor of less-qualified candidates in an aggressive diversity recruitment drive.

Chris Smith says Ally Financial ignored his 20 years of experience in security and intelligence work and gave the job he wanted to a former Walmart employee because she was a woman.

He was given a junior role in the North Carolina office, but then sidelined by a boss who railed against «white supremacy,» was treated unfairly, and ended up quitting within weeks, he says.

It’s the latest lawsuit from America First Legal (AFL), a lobbying group led by former Trump administration officials that fights diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) policies in the US.

Proponents of DEI say it helps get more women and minorities into colleges and the workplace, but critics say it ends up hurting straight white men.

Chris Smith is only offered the youngest job on Ally’s threat team despite his decades of experience

Ally Financial, an $8 billion bank holding company based in Detroit, Michigan, did not respond to’s request for comment.

«Federal law is clear – no discrimination means no discrimination,» AFL lawyer Gene Hamilton said.

«No American should ever face discrimination based on their race or gender, and we will fight to achieve justice for our client.»

The case was filed Tuesday in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of North Carolina.

Smith, a former Marine and Army officer who served in Iraq and Afghanistan and has two decades of security experience, applied in 2023 for three roles in Ally’s newly created «threat division» unit.

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He was offered and accepted the lowest-paid security analyst role at around $75,000 a year.

Ally hired Rachel Stuckey, a white woman who had worked at Walmart for the previous four years, as a team manager.

Stuckey also had a year of experience in counter-terrorism work in Israel.

Smith says Stuckey was hired «because of his gender» so the bank could meet DEI’s goals.

Ally also hired a less qualified black woman and a black man in senior analyst roles over Smith, despite his greater experience, it is claimed.

Once he started working in the Charlotte office in September 2023, Smith says he faced more discrimination.

He was not properly rewarded for his work, he says.

His teammates were sent to training, allowed to work from home and given parking spaces near the office, but Smith was not.

He was also mistreated by Ally director Bruce Bellamy, who was «fixated on DEI,» court documents allege.

Smith says he had to work five days a week at Ally's Charlotte office when co-workers could telecommute

Smith says he had to work five days a week at Ally’s Charlotte office when co-workers could telecommute

Ally has aggressive diversity hiring goals, documents from America First Legal show

Ally has aggressive diversity hiring goals, documents from America First Legal show

Ally boss Bruce Bellamy says the bank's most serious threat has been

Ally boss Bruce Bellamy says the bank’s most serious threat has been «white supremacists, anti-DEI groups and anti-awakening groups», it is claimed.

Bellamy said the bank’s most serious security threats are «white supremacists, anti-DEI groups and anti-awakening groups».

When Smith disagreed, the boss «became particularly upset with a white man challenging his views», it is claimed.

Bellamy and Stuckey «isolated Smith from other Ally employees, refused to give him credit for his work product, and placed significant barriers on his ability to perform his job duties, thereby harming his performance,» the paper said.

AFL lawyer Gene Hamilton

AFL lawyer Gene Hamilton

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«The disparate and negative treatment … was motivated by Smith’s race and gender,» they add.

Smith quit on September 18 and has been struggling to get paid work ever since.

The 20-page lawsuit says Ally violated race and gender protections under the Civil Rights Act.

Smith is seeking a trial, damages and legal fees.

Ally has not commented on the lawsuit.

The company has a strict DEI policy and says it is working hard to build a «diverse and talented team.»

It’s close to an even split between men and women, Ally says.

“We have increased or maintained the representation of women and people of color in our management and senior roles, and redesigned programs to create more opportunities for individuals who are new to their roles in the company,” Ally said in a recent report.

The case is part of a growing number of lawsuits and filings against DEI’s practices since the U.S. Supreme Court’s landmark June 2023 decision to end affirmative action in college admissions.

The AFL, led by former adviser to President Donald Trump Stephen Miller, has filed more than 15 lawsuits and more than 30 complaints with the US Human Rights Agency.

The lawsuits alleged that hiring and hiring decisions involving jobs and stipends at major companies are biased against white workers.

«Major corporations across the United States have … programs and policies that blatantly discriminate against American citizens precisely because of things they cannot control,» said the AFL’s Hamilton.

Proponents of DEI schemes say they bring more black, brown, female and queer talent into offices and colleges and boost morale overall.

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But critics say it’s a «woke» virtue-signaling exercise that promotes discrimination against straight white men.

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