Naval Academy to begin seeking members for new board to review school's operations

November 19, 1996|By Tom Bowman | Tom Bowman,SUN STAFF

This week calls will go out to the famous and obscure alike to serve on a wide-ranging review board that will delve into the Naval Academy's operations, from ethics to military training.

Among the names being talked about to serve on the 18- to 20-member board are retired Army Gen. Colin L. Powell and former National Security Adviser Brent Scowcroft. The panel also is expected to include recent academy graduates, representatives from business, the media, the U.S. Military Academy at West Point and the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs.

The Naval Academy's civilian Board of Visitors, which decided last month to create the review board, met in closed session yesterday to formulate the guidelines of the review.

The review board is expected to meet for six months beginning in January and have a permanent staff, splitting its monthly meetings between Washington and Annapolis, said a Board of Visitors member who requested anonymity. Members of the review board are expected to be announced in the next two weeks.

The board will break into four subcommittees -- one on ethics that will also include gender and racial issues and others on curriculum development and military staffing.

Last month, retired Rear Adm. Benjamin Montoya, chairman of the Board of Visitors, said he did not want the review to be "an incestuous study" and there is an effort to have members from varied backgrounds.

The review board will be directed by Adm. Stansfield Turner, a former head of the CIA and academy graduate, and Dr. Judy J. Mohraz, the president of Goucher College. Former Maryland Rep. Beverly B. Byron and U.S. Sen. John McCain, an Arizona Republican and academy graduate, also will serve on the review board.

The review will come after a year of troubles at the 151-year-old Naval Academy, ranging from drug abuse and car theft rings to pedophiles and sexual assaults.

Two years ago, Adm. Charles R. Larson took over as superintendent -- the first with four-star rank -- after the worst cheating scandal in the academy's history.

"[The review board] has nothing to do with the present leadership," said the Board of Visitors member, "but hopefully [it] will set a precedent for dealing with problems of sexual harassment, alcohol and drug abuse, the curriculum and set a precedent" for other universities.

Pub Date: 11/19/96

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