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FAMU hires anti-hazing czar

Bryan SmithThe school may have struck out in its attempt to hiring a new Marching 100 director this week, but Florida A&M University has filled one of the three positions connected to its effort to rebuild the band after the hazing death of drum major Robert Champion.

FAMU alum Bryan F. Smith will serve as the special assistant to the president for anti-hazing starting Feb. 1. He is expected to be given wide-ranging authority to enforce the school's hazing regulations and address issues concerning hazing.

Interim President Larry Robinson announced Wednesday that the person they hoped to hire as band director, Jorim Reidhad turned down the job and the school would reopen its search. Also, FAMU is reportedly close to hiring a new band compliance officer that will enforce participation and financial regulations regarding the Marching 100.

Here is the university's press release on Smith:

Florida A&M University (FAMU) has announced that Bryan F. Smith will serve as the new special assistant to the president for anti-hazing. Recently, Smith, who is a FAMU graduate, was the executive director/co-founder of Destined for Success Educational Services, Inc. in Decatur, Ga.

“We welcome Mr. Smith back to FAMU,” said Interim President Larry Robinson.  “We are confident that with his expertise, he will ensure that all of the initiatives that have been put in place will be implemented.”

“I know this position will require a high level of communication with various entities around campus, with the local community and with investigative agencies,” Smith said. “It will be a demanding position but I am very confident in my abilities and I vow to be organized, timely, fair, proactive, open and honest, ethical and hard-working.   It will be my goal to change any culture of hazing through a variety of strategies, to maintain an efficient reporting process for any allegations of hazing, to facilitate tangible informational sessions regarding hazing, to ensure that the Student Code of Conduct is being adhered to and to help maintain the integrity of the University.”

Smith received his juris doctorate from John Marshall Law School, a master’s degree in public management from FAMU and a bachelor’s degree in political science from North Carolina A&T State University.   

He is registered as a certified mediator for the State of Georgia.  He has been offered a salary of $90,000 and is scheduled to report to work on Feb. 1.