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FAMU VP Of Advancement, Shawnta Friday-Stroud, Steps Down Amid Donation Scandal

President Larry Robinson accepted the resignation of Friday-Stroud, who was thanked by Gerami for her "hard work" with the donation.

Shawnta Friday-Stroud has resigned as Florida A&M University’s Vice President of Advancement amid the institution’s recent donation controversy.

Her resignation came ahead of an emergency meeting of the university’s board of trustees, according to HBCU Sports. Rattler Nation informed the FAMU community of Friday-Stroud’s status on X, formerly known as Twitter, with a statement from President Larry Robinson. “Earlier today, Dr. Shawnta Friday-Stroud tendered her resignation as VP for Advancement. After careful consideration, I accepted her resignation. Dr. Friday-Stroud will return to serve as the Dean of the School of Business and Industry.”

The resignation follows scrutiny over a record-breaking $237 million donation from Gregory Gerami of Batterson Farms Corporation on May 4. As previously reported by BLACK ENTERPRISE, Robinson put the gift on hold and announced the decision during an emergency meeting with FAMU’s fundraising foundation on May 9.

HBCU Sports noted that last week, Robinson, Friday-Stroud, athletic director Tiffani-Dawn Sykes, and Board of Trustees Chairperson Kristin Harper signed a non-disclosure agreement with Gerami regarding the controversial donation. Robinson addressed concerns on WTXL, admitting “…missteps were made.” He assured of a more transparent process for large gifts going forward, with the board’s guidance.

The historic donation was initially set to fund student initiatives, athletic programs, scholarships, and recruitment. “This donation will have a far-reaching impact on our academic and athletics programs,” Robinson stated at the time. However, the lack of information on Gerami’s background and access to such resources raised red flags. During the May 4 graduation ceremony announcement, it was claimed the money was already “in the bank” in a video from WTXL.

In a previous video posted by the outlet, Gerami told FAMU staff the gift was “…the first token of our relationship with FAMU and there is more to come over time…as we achieve our success, so shall FAMU.” He thanked Friday-Stroud and the FAMU team for their hard work.

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