A State College gym has filed a complaint against two former employees who reportedly used the gym’s private customer database to solicit members away from the gym and to a new fitness center that they were planning to open together in the same area, according to court documents.
Attorneys for The North Club, 1510 Martin St., filed the complaint at the Centre County Courthouse on Wednesday seeking damages and emergency and preliminary injunctive relief.
According to court documents, Claire Colebrook and Jinger Gottschall, who were employed by The North Club until Nov. 2012, used confidential membership lists to contact members to switch over to a new fitness center they were forming, Fitology LLC.
Fitology LLC, 542 Westerly Pkwy., is scheduled to open Jan. 7, 2013.
In 2011 and 2012, Gottschall was given access to the membership lists in order to conduct research studies at The North Club. Gottschall, however, was aware that she was not authorized to use this private information for any other purpose besides her studies, according to court documents.
In mid-to-late Nov. 2012, Colebrook announced to one of her group fitness classes at the gym that she and Gottschall would be leaving the current gym to open their own business -- a fitness club that would be in direct competition with The North Club, according to court documents.
During the announcement, Colebrook solicited The North Club’s members to join Fitology LLC, and within hours of her announcement, she also contacted several of The North Club’s instructors to encourage them to leave and join her new gym, according to court documents.
“Gottschall and Colebrook improperly used their position of trust as employees and agents of The North Club for the purpose of misappropriating The North Club’s confidential and proprietary membership information to divert business from The North Club," court documents said.
Colebrook and Gottschall are both listed as instructors at Penn State under the school’s directory.