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Former Senator Lawson Eyes Vacant FAMU Presidency

Sascha Cordner
Al Lawson

Former Senator Al Lawson is reported to be eyeing the presidency at Florida A&M University.

Lawson, 65, is a FAMU alumnus who served more than 10 years in the Florida’s Senate and twice ran unsuccessfully for Congress. He’s also politically well-connected, and would come at a time when FAMU needs a fundraiser and a promoter.

Lawson told the Tampa Bay Times that, “I don’t know anyone who can do that any better than I can,” Lawson said.

In the Times article, Lawson says he was encouraged by others to apply for the job, and a FAMU spokeswoman says there is no deadline for applications.

Lawson would join a list of more than 40 other candidates, none which are sitting university presidents. The applicant pool so far includes several senior-level administrators at schools such as Baylor and Northwestern. It also includes former university presidents, at least two which received no-confidence votes from their boards.

FAMU’s interim president Larry Robinson’s name has also been floated for the permanent position, but he hasn’t expressed interest in the job.

The school’s Board of Trustees has a conference call scheduled for Dec. 27 for planning. Applications are set to be reviewed Jan. 3, finalists interviewed on Jan. 6, and a new president could be named by Jan. 9.