Larry Robinson can remove “interim” from his title — finally.
Florida A&M University’s Board of Trustees named Robinson the university’s 12th president Thursday, capping a 20-year-tenure during which he has been called to lead the state’s only public historically black university through some troubled times.
“I’m extremely humbled, perhaps even more overjoyed to move this university forward,” Robinson said. “Students will continue to be our No. 1 priority. Our goal is to ensure their success.”
The appointment was met with enthusiastic applause from the FAMU Grand Ballroom audience, mostly faculty, staff and alumni.
Trustees didn’t say when they would seek confirmation of Robinson’s appointment from the Board of Governors, nor did they indicate a schedule for negotiating a new contract.
Robinson leaves Saturday for the annual meeting of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges, the university’s accreditation agency.
While in Dallas, he will recruit students and meet with alumni and potential corporate donors. Soon, he will travel to Los Angeles with members of his team on a recruitment/fundraising effort hosted by alumni.
Robinson, 62, said immediate priorities include fundraising, preparing for the upcoming legislative session and shoring up his leadership team.
“I want to make sure I secure sound support for the university,” he said.
From administrators to faculty and students, the trustees’ action was viewed as a chance for progress and stability.
“This allows us to move full-steam ahead,” said Shawnta Friday-Stroud, dean of the School of Business and Industry.