Lawrence Tromley, Florida A&M’s audit service investigation administrator, was terminated on Nov. 10, The Famuan has learned.
His termination came after the abrupt Nov. 5 resignation of former Vice President for Audit and Compliance Charles O’Duor.
O’Duor broke ties with the university after an independent ‘whistle-blower’ investigation by local law firm Sniffen and Spellman, according to University Spokeswoman Sharon Saunders.
The firm found that the Division of Audit and Compliance, an office both of which O’Duor and Tromley had administrative oversight, failed complete 15 internal audits required by the Board of Trustees and Board of Governors.
“The Division of Audit and Compliance is the university’s principal organization for assisting the university in maintaining university-wide external and internal compliance with all applicable laws, regulations, policies, processes and internal controls,” University President James Ammons stated.
Apparently, O’Duor compiled abridged executive reports for James Ammons and the BOT, but failed to submit a thorough final report.
Sniffen and Spellman concluded that the office didn’t have quality assurance plans in place, which contradicted the goals and objectives outlined in the DAC’s charter, established in 2005.
Tromley had been a FAMU employee since 2006.
Florida A&M’s Vice President of Audit and Compliance Charles O’Duor resigned via a letter dated Nov.5 for unspecified reasons.
O’Duor was responsible for leading institution-wide audit and compliance plans, through the Division of Audit and Compliance, which in turn propagate the university’s mission.
According to the university’s Chief Communications Officer Sharon Saunders, O’Duor was over the DAC, which was key in ensuring that FAMU is in line with internal and external regulations.
“Mr. O’Duor oversaw an office that has the responsibility of making sure the university was in compliance with all regulations and policies that govern the university, as well as those from the Board of Governors and other state entities,” said Saunders.
The Board of Trustees established the DAC in 2005 as a way to improve the internal governance of the university.
“The Division of Compliance & Audit provides insight on the mitigation of business risk to assist the BOT and management in the effective discharge of their responsibilities as they relate to the University policies, processes, programs, information systems, internal controls, and management reporting,” states the FAMU website.
The website also indicates that the university president is responsible for hiring the VP of audit and compliance.
O’Duor’s abrupt resignation, however, appears to have occurred just days after an investigation was concluded by Sniffen & Spellman law firm.
The investigation documents, released by the Office of Communications, revealed that the DAC had no quality assurance and improvement plan in place as required by the Institute of Internal Auditor and the division’s charter and operation procedure.
The firm’s investigation also found that the DAC’s Chief Audit Executive O’Duor never informed the BOT of this fact.
In addition to not having an audit and review plan in place, O’Duor’s division was also cited for never having submitted 15 final audit or review reports to the BOT Audit Committee and the Chief of Staff of the university. Rather, abridged executive summaries were submitted instead.
Finally, the investigation found that because O’Duor had constructive knowledge that this happened, the DAC contradicted the principles outlined in its charter and the IIA standards. President James Ammons stated that the university is shocked by the allegations, and that he and his team are working to find an interim.
“These are very serious allegations because the Division of Audit and Compliance is the university’s principal organization for assisting the University in maintaining university-wide external and internal compliance with all applicable laws, regulations, policies, processes and internal controls,” Ammons stated.
O’Duor came to FAMU in 2007 as a part of Ammons’ leadership team. The 59-year-old received a $191,000 salary.
“The university will do whatever it takes to sustain the highest ethical standards of professional conduct and integrity and will focus on making sure that we correct any areas of concerns that have been identified in the report.”
Saunders said Ammons wants to be clear in specifying that the audit investigation is not directly related to any state audits.
“The audit referred to during the investigation are internal audits of areas the university want reviewed and not the annual audit conducted by the state auditor general. Since the 2007-08 academic year, FAMU has received clean unqualified audits from the auditor general,” Saunders said.
Saunders said O’Duor’s position was especially key when FAMU received federal grant money.
“He was very instrumental in ensuring that work was completed on several external audits involving federal dollars that the university received,” she added.
O’Duor could not be reached for comment.