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Lawmakers seek probe of leader changes at Bishop State

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — Mobile area legislators are seeking an investigation into the state’s constant leadership changes at Bishop State Community College, including the dismissal of the school’s latest interim president.

The 10 lawmakers, including both Democrats and Republicans, sent a letter Monday to Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey, who serves as president of the Alabama Community College System Board of Trustees, seeking an investigation. The historically Black community college has had five interim or permanent leaders since 2015, they said.

“There is an obvious problem causing the constant changes in leadership. therefore, we strongly call for an investigation into the changes,” they wrote.

The lawmakers expressed concerned about the recent dismissal of Interim President Lawrence Brandyburg. They said the school had seen a number of successes under Brandyburg, including the opening of a manufacturing center and an agreement with Airbus to train aircraft assemblers.

“We have grave concerns about micromanagement and leadership changes that will hamper the community’s efforts to rebuild confidence in Bishop State. This community has supported efforts to rebuild the integrity and foundation of Bishop State Community College. Therefore, it is troubling to witness the recent barrage of leaders that have been at the helm of this historically black community college,” they wrote.

Alabama Community College System Chancellor Jimmy Baker appointed Charles Jones as acting president of the community college on Friday. A new presidential search is currently underway.

News outlets report that some of the lawmakers also held a news conference outside the school on Monday. They asked Baker and the system’s board of trustees to provide information.

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