Trustees move forward 3 names for chancellor

UNC Spellings

FILE - In this Friday, Oct. 23, 2015, file photo, Margaret Spellings, president of the North Carolina public university system, makes comments after being elected by the University of North Carolina Board of Governors in Chapel Hill, N.C. North Carolina's public university board is holding an emergency session amid news reports that Spellings is leaving as president of the state's 17-campus system. A statement from the University of North Carolina Board of Governors says Friday, Oct. 26, 2018 emergency session was called to "consider an executive personnel matter." (AP Photo/Gerry Broome, File)


By Reggie Ponder
Staff Writer

Thursday, December 6, 2018

The selection of the next chancellor of Elizabeth City State University is now in the hands of University of North Carolina System President Margaret Spellings.

The ECSU Board of Trustees voted Wednesday to forward the names of three finalists for the chancellor’s job to Spellings for her consideration. Spellings is expected to choose one of the three to recommend to the UNC Board of Governors for its consideration on Dec. 14.

The names of the finalists are being kept confidential in accordance with UNC System policy.

The trustees voted to forward the names after receiving a report Wednesday from the ECSU Chancellor Search Committee. The search panel reviewed resumes, interviewed half a dozen candidates in person, and narrowed the field down to three. The committee met for a final time Wednesday morning before making its report to trustees.

Search Committee Chairman Harold Barnes said in an interview after the trustees meeting that he is proud of the three candidates the board is forwarding to Spellings.

“We have three great — not good but great — candidates with a combination of skills,” Barnes said. “That is what we were looking for.”

Citing the confidentiality policy, Barnes would neither confirm nor deny that ECSU interim Chancellor Karrie Dixon is among the finalists for the chancellor position.

Dixon, a UNC System vice president, has served as interim chancellor since Chancellor Thomas Conway’s retirement at the end of May and her name was frequently put forward for the permanent position by members of the public during chancellor search forums this fall.

Barnes also declined to answer any questions about the backgrounds of the finalists other than to say that some of the finalists have experience both in academia and in other leadership roles and that all of them have experience in academic leadership.

During Wednesday’s search committee meeting Barnes was asked by committee members if Spellings plans to conduct her own interviews with the three finalists or simply review the report from the committee. Barnes replied that there is no policy requiring the UNC president to interview the finalists but that it’s customary for the president to do that.

Barnes thanked the search firm Isaacson, Miller for its help in the search.

“We thank you for bringing us a whole host of viable candidates in this search process,” he said.

Barnes also thanked Lynn Duffy of the UNC System office and Gwen Sanders, secretary to ECSU, for their support during the search.