South Bend HRC Director out after less than a year in the role

(Tommie Lee/95.3 MNC)

The director of the South Bend Human Rights Commission has been fired after less than a year in her position.

Yolanda Young-Smith has been released from her position following numerous negative reports about her leadership. The South Bend Tribune reports that many employees have quit during her time in the role.

The Human Rights Commission is meant to help people in South Bend address discrimination in categories like employment, housing, and more. Staff can help them determine if they have legal grounds for concern.

While Young-Smith was on vacation in Italy, claims about her leadership were told to South Bend’s Diversity, Compliance and Inclusion Officer. By the time she returned, he had heard enough.

This situation also brought the compliance and inclusion officer under scrutiny. Some were concerned that he had not seemed aware of Young-Smith’s alleged behavior for the majority of her tenure.

These behaviors were not enumerated. However, attorney Ricky Herbst described the behavior mentioned in the claims as “egregious” and unbelievable.

The former director said the accusations that led to her removal were not true. She said she “had very little authority to do the work” that needed to be done, and threatened to sue anyone who repeats the listed allegations against her for defamation.

Now, at least four positions at the Commission need to be filled. You can apply for some of these openings by clicking here.


  1. What was the city paying her a year to afford a nice trip to Italy ? It’s the only city in the region that has this type of Department paid by the taxpayers.


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