Decision draws positive reaction locally

Monroe News Star

By Ken Stickney • • February 27, 2010

Grambling Mayor Martha Andrus said Friday that community leaders would agree with the decision to put the search on hold for a new president at Grambling State University.

She said while some GSU supporters insist a Grambling graduate should be the president, most agree that interim President Frank Pogue is doing a good job.

Pogue, 71, took the interim job in mid-December but didn’t start to work full time until the beginning of the year.

Andrus said Pogue has quickly begun healing some of the fissures between the campus and the community that began during former President Horace Judson’s five-year tenure, and that, for now, GSU would be well served by “letting Pogue do what he does best,” which is build relationships.

“I think that would be a good move,” she said.

Judson resigned in October.

Grambling businessman Marvin Davis, who is a 1990 GSU graduate, agrees.

“From what I have observed, the atmosphere has changed,” Davis said. “It seems as if it was God sent, putting him in the position.”

Davis said he has not met Pogue, but he has heard the interim president is open and has great assessment skills.

“His main focus is the student and the things a president should be focused on rather than vendettas,” Davis said. “He brings hope.”

State Rep. Rick Gallot, D-Ruston, said his initial impressions of Pogue are good, and all feedback he’s received about the interim leader have been positive.

“All in all, right now, he presents a good fit,” Gallot said, citing Pogue’s experience, maturity and the “calming effect” he has had on the GSU campus.

He said the search committee’s decision is “probably a good move on behalf of the board.”