Fred Smoller is gone from his post as head of Brandman University’s master of public administration program.
He’s not fired, as he has tenure, but the situation is a sticky one that raises thorny issues of academic freedom with critics.
“I was told city officials were upset with my involvement in the examination of city compensation, and other things I’ve written regarding city consolidation, which they apparently found threatening,” Smoller (far left) told us. “Academics are often criticized for living in an ivory tower. I’ve been criticized for trying to be relevant.”
That’s not quite the way Brandman (an independent part of the Chapman University system) sees it.
“There is an unfortunate rumor circulating that Dr. Fred Smoller was dismissed from his position as Director of the Master’s in Public Administration program at Brandman University. This is totally incorrect,” said a written statement we received from Brandman spokeswoman Rita Wilds.