Glenn Gilzean “humbled” by FAMU reappointment

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Florida Gov. Rick Scott must have faith in Glenn Gilzean. After all, he appointed Gilzean trustee of Florida A&M University twice.

Gilzean, a 30-year-old St. Petersburg resident and vice president of Step Up For Students, was one of 42 reappointments to state boards and committees, which failed confirmation by the Florida Senate. The listing includes Dr. John Armstrong as State Surgeon General and Michael D. Crews for Secretary of the Florida Department of Corrections.

Scott originally appointed Gilzean as the FAMU trustee March 14. He replaces retired Tampa business executive Charles Langston.

“I am humbled that the governor believes in me,” Gilzean says, “to help students and the entire (FAMU) Rattler nation.”

Since the appointment was during the active Senate assembly, the Florida appointment process allows lawmakers to put off approval during the first yearly legislative session following selection. The “Failed to Confirm/Took No Action” compelled the governor to appoint Gilzean for a second time last week.

The Senate must accept Gilzean in the second-year session. If not, his appointment will be void.

Scott has a history supporting Gilzean. In 2010, Scott appointed him to the Pinellas County School Board. Previously, Gilzean worked as a regional field director for the Florida Board of Education and served on the Florida Attorney General’s Gang Reduction Task Force.

In November 2012, Gilzean ran a heated race to keep his Pinellas School Board seat, but lost to former St. Petersburg City Councilwoman Rene Flowers.

Gilzean joins FAMU in the wake of a high-profile hazing incident, where the 2011 death of drum major Robert Champion resulted in 12-month academic accreditation probation.

“My role as trustee is to provide overall governance,” Gilzean says.

“The quality of academics produces great talented workforce,” he adds. “We want to make sure that students coming to the university have a great experience.”

The new terms for Scott’s latest reappointments began May 16. This time, when confirmed, Gilzean will be FAMU trustee through Jan. 6, 2018.

As for the Senate approval system, Gilzean is taking it all in stride.

“I’m not used to that process,” he says. “It is my first appointment that requires Senate confirmation, so it’s new to me.”

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Phil Ammann is a St. Petersburg-based journalist and blogger. With more than three decades of writing, editing and management experience, Phil produced material for both print and online, in addition to founding HRNewsDaily.com. His broad range includes covering news, local government and culture reviews for Patch.com, technical articles and profiles for BetterRVing Magazine and advice columns for a metaphysical website, among others. Phil has served as a contributor and production manager for SaintPetersBlog since 2013. He lives in St. Pete with his wife, visual artist Margaret Juul and can be reached at phil@floridapolitics.com and on Twitter @PhilAmmann.