(Updated 8/2/2013) Baltimore City school board member Anthony A. Hamilton submitted his letter of resignation Aug. 1 after several inconsistencies were disclosed about his personal and professional background.
According to Baltimore NBC affiliate WBAL-TV, Hamilton used another man’s academic record to produce false credentials.
“As a result of Mr. Hamilton’s actions and claims we are tightening up our hiring procedures,” William Reinhard, spokesperson for the Maryland State Department of Education, told the AFRO.
Reinhard told the AFRO that the department received tips of discrepancies concerning claims Hamilton made about his background, and that he allegedly falsified information on his resume.
“Mr. Hamilton’s resignation from the Baltimore City School Board due to allegations of falsified education documents is unfortunate, but necessary at this time,” Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake said in a statement.
Hamilton was appointed to the school board in June. According to a June 18 release from Governor Martin O’Malley’s office, Hamilton was an Education Program Coordinator for Baltimore City, working with city schools and the Department of Juvenile Services. The release also stated that Hamilton is a graduate of Coppin State University, and Johns Hopkins University.
An investigation conducted by the state Education Department, however, found that no degrees were awarded to Hamilton.
Hamilton worked at Coppin State University as an admissions counselor. While there, he was able to gain access to security codes needed to manipulate students’ records, according to WBAL. He was able to change the transcripts of another man, to make it appear as if they were his, tricking the system to show that it was he who actually had the degree.
“To be on the school board, a qualified candidate must live in Baltimore City, have a passion and desire to work in the school system and have an overall interest in the position,” said Reinhard. “The selected candidate’s information is then passed onto the mayor and governor and the final decision is made.”
“This position is a non-paid position,” Reinhard told the AFRO. “An undergraduate or master’s degree isn’t required.”
Hamilton ran for Baltimore city council in District 2 in 2011, but lost to Brandon M. Scott.
Though he served on the school board for less than two months, Hamilton helped develop policies for the city school system, make decisions on the budget for the school system and helped develop educational requirements.
Additional consequences may follow from Hamilton’s full-time employer, the city’s Health Department.
“I have ordered the Baltimore City Health Department, where Mr. Hamilton is employed, to conduct an internal review of these circumstances and to take appropriate action as needed,” Rawlings-Blake said in a statement.
The unidentified man told WBAL that he tried to get a copy of his transcripts years ago from Coppin, but encountered and unexpected surprise.
“They could not locate it by my name, but when I gave my social security number, they were able to pull it up, but it was not my name on it," he said. "Anthony Hamilton’s name was on my transcript.”
Hamilton could not be reached for comment.