Journalism Professor Sues Florida A&M In Tenure Dispute
A White female journalism professor at Florida A&M University has sued the school in a tenure dispute, claiming “Black men are favored” in promotion to top faculty jobs. Gloria Horning’s civil rights suit alleges she was hired on a tenure track in 1993 and was not told until last year that a doctorate was required. Horning, who has a master’s degree and 10 years’ experience as a television producer, says in the suit she was denied tenure because she is a White women employed at a predominantly and historically Black university. “Other applicants for tenure who are Black or who are men have been granted tenure despite not having a terminal degree,” she says. The suit says 10 people who did not have doctoral degrees gained tenure in the journalism school in the past 15 years. Horning, whose teaching contract at the school expired Aug. 7, also has the support of the FAMU journalism dean, Dr. Robert Ruggles. “We’ll have to see how this plays out in court,” Ruggles says. University officials would not comment on the suit, since the case is pending.No trial date has been set. In addition, a FAMU journalism professor who writes a column for the Tallahassee Democrat has been charged with stealing $7,800 in checks from the school’s student newspaper, where he was an adviser. Keith Thomas, who was arrested on a grand theft charge, told the Democrat that he has had some problems with gambling. Thomas, who was already planning to leave the university by the end of the summer, has been placed on leave by Ruggles.
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