President search to begin soon

With Fred Gainous gone and the Board of Trustees’ stipulation that an interim president cannot be the permanent president, the Presidential Search Committee will begin meeting soon to find Bryant’s successor.

Although different members of the Student Government Association already know what type of person they would want in office, the search committee, chaired by BOT member the Rev. R. B. Holmes, will not meet until April 5.

SGA President and Trustee Virgil Miller, 23, will be a part of the search committee for the new president just as he was a part of the committee that chose Bryant to be the interim president.

Miller, a second-year graduate public health student from West Palm Beach, said he did not know how long the search would last. However, he estimated that it would take from six months to a year.

As for the search, Miller said the committee would probably have some help choosing applicants.

We’ll probably hire a firm to search for applicants,” Miller said. “It depends on the efficiency of the committee, how much is already in place.”

Miller’s time on the committee will be short-lived. He graduates in April and will be forced to give up his seat to the next SGA president, Ramon Alexander, 20, who is currently the 34th Student Senate president.

Alexander, a junior political science student from Tallahassee, said he hopes to “make a smooth transition” and make sure the selection process is fair.

“It’s going to take a collective effort,” Alexander said.

“The same thing that Virgil is looking for will be what I will look for.

I would like to see a new president by the end of my term as student body president.”

Alexander said he knows what he would like to see from the next Florida A&M University president.

“Our next university president is going to have to be committed to putting students first,” Alexander said.

Alexander approved of Bryant’s appointment and all that she has done for FAMU so far, noting that she has had to handle a great deal in her short tenure.

“She has a lot on her plate right now and she is trying to juggle it all,” Alexander said.

Alexander said he enjoys the way she approaches her job, despite all that she is dealing with.

“She is a very straight forward person,” Alexander said.

“As student body president, I am looking forward to working with her next year.”

Torey Alston, a junior senator, shares Alexander’s enthusiasm about Bryant. Alston, 20, a junior business administration student from Fort Lauderdale, said he admires the work she is putting in to fix the current deficit and housing problems.

“She has come in with enthusiasm and trust from our Board of Trustees,” Alston said. “I would actually put her name in the hat (for permanent president), but I know she’s refused so far.”

Although he is not on the search committee, Alston said he does not plan to sit idle when it is time to pick FAMU’s next president.

“I definitely plan to be informed and I definitely plan to be more involved,” Alston said.

He noted that the SGA president has the power to appoint people to the search committee and he hopes the future SGA president will appoint him.

A number of student leaders have suggested the possibility of a series of townhall meeting concerning the search to educate students and keep them updated.

Sophomore Class President and SGA Vice President-Elect Phillip Agnew said that he hopes students are allowed to work with administrators throughout the search process.

“I would like students to have adequate input in all stages of the search process,” Agnew said.

He suggests that university officials create forums for students to meet applicants to understand their respective visions.

“As long as the student body remains vocal and has avenues to voice their concerns, I think they will have a huge impact in the search process,” Agnew said.

Contact Brandon D. Oliver at