Leadership & Governance

Florida A&M U. Suspends Its Search for a New President

March 15, 2013

For the second time in as many months, a public university in Florida has called off a presidential search just before its expected conclusion.

Florida A&M University will temporarily suspend its search for a president because its governing board has concluded it would be "irresponsible" to name a new president at a time when the university's regional accreditation is at risk, Solomon L. Badger III, chairman of the board, said in a written statement on Friday.

In January the University of Florida made a similar announcement, opting to keep J. Bernard Machen on as president rather than name his successor as expected.

The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools' Commission on Colleges placed Florida A&M on probation in December, following the hazing death of a marching-band member.

"It would also be eminently unfair to bring in a new president as FAMU's accreditation hangs in the balance," Mr. Badger said.

Larry Robinson, the university's interim president and former provost, will continue to lead the institution. Mr. Robinson succeeded James H. Ammons, who resigned amid an uproar over the hazing death of Robert Champion, a drum major.

Mr. Badger said the board would "resume the search process after the university has addressed these critical issues."