Welcome to FAMU

On Tuesday, April 1, 2014, Dr. Elmira Mangum begins her first day as Florida A&M University’s new Rattler-in-Chief. To celebrate, the school will host a Welcome Rally  on the steps of Lee Hall, Thursday, April 4, at 12:15 p.m.

Dr. Mangum will be FAMU’s 11th president. She also has the distinction of becoming the first female permanent president in the university’s 126-year history.

Dr. Castell Vaughn Bryant served as interim president from 2005-2007.

FAMU’s Board of Trustees selected Dr. Mangum in January, in a 10-2 vote. After rounds of contract negotiations marked by efforts to decrease her compensation package, she was approved by the Florida Board of Governors on February 20, 2014.

Dr. Mangum brings over 25 years of higher education administration to the post. She was most recently Vice President for Budget and Planning at Cornell University.

Show me the money

Today I received the following email from Florida A&M University:

FAMU Board of Trustees Schedules Emergency Called Meeting

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – The Florida A&M University (FAMU) Board of Trustees has scheduled an emergency called meeting for Thursday, Feb. 13 at 4 p.m. The general subject matter of the meeting is to consider the employment contract of President-select Dr. Elmira Mangum.

The public may access the meeting by dialing (877) 884-1929. The conference ID number is 23698072.

For more information, call (850) 599-3413 or visit,


A similarly worded release was issued on January 30, 2014 for a called meeting the next day. Earlier this year, FAMU announced its selection for university President:

Contract negotiations are ongoing, yet despite her robust qualifications, the Board of Trustees has had difficulty agreeing on the details of her contract. Mangum was initially offered a base salary of $425,000. Tallahassee.com reports this is $100,000 more than James H. Ammons’ initial salary in 2007.

Her base salary would, “put her in the upper third of Florida’s 12 state university presidents, according to analysis by Florida Trend magazine. However, her total compensation will likely put her more in the middle or lower end of the pack,” says the Tampa Bay Times.

But some members of the Board wanted to cut the offer to $385,000. A divided Board did agree to some tweaks in compensation, but ultimately voted against the base salary reduction 7-5. One of the suggested changes included the removal of a $1000 per month car allowance.

Any changes in the contract are reviewed by Mangum and require the Board meet again as negotiations continue. She has placed a counter-offer for a university sponsored vehicle. The Board will continue their review on Thursday.

If the Florida Board of Governors approves her selection, Mangum’s three-year tenure begins April 1, 2014, with an option to renew.