- Associated Press - Friday, September 25, 2015

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - Southern University has named former Alcorn State University President M. Christopher Brown as its new provost and vice president for academic affairs.

The Advocate reports (https://bit.ly/1KzrZgP) the Southern University System Board of Supervisors unanimously agreed to hire Brown at its meeting Friday. He will be paid $200,000 a year.

Brown resigned from Alcorn in 2013 as Mississippi’s College Board moved to suspend him. A board investigation found bid-law violations in spending on the on-campus president’s house and questioned the relationship between one of Brown’s aides and a company that staged concerts on the historically black campus.

Announcing that a search committee had chosen Brown, Southern University System President and Chancellor Ray Belton praised his experience

“I think the system and the Baton Rouge campus will benefit from his leadership,” Belton said. “This is a very critical role … I’m looking forward to working with Dr. Brown and continuing our engagement with all the faculty.”



The Southern University board agreed earlier this year to combine its president and Baton Rouge campus chancellor roles. Belton has said the new vice president and provost would help oversee the Baton Rouge campus.

Documents reviewed by The Associated Press in 2014 showed Alcorn spent almost $89,000 on furniture and renovations at the president’s house without seeking required bids. The documents also showed that the production company associated with Brown’s aide collected $85,000 from Alcorn. An auditor said the school spent more than $67,000 in bond money on projects that weren’t allowed in the lending agreement.

No charges have been brought against Brown, and Mississippi officials didn’t demand that he repay the money.

Brown’s departure came after two years in which Alcorn had won awards and drawn notice for building racial bridges. Students praised Brown for his accessibility and warmth.

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Information from: The Advocate, https://theadvocate.com

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