Farewells, welcomes pervade UNC trustees meeting
Change is in the air at UNC.
And perhaps the best known change comes next month when Chancellor Holden Thorp heads to Washington University in St. Louis to become that school’s provost.
Thorp, who served five years at the head of his alma mater, will be replaced by Chancellor-elect Carol Folt, who is currently the interim president at Dartmouth.
In addition, four members of the UNC Board of Trustees bid farewell on Thursday, including Chairman Wade Hargrove and board members Felicia Washington, Barbara Hyde and Kel Landis.
The UNC Board of Governors will consider a slate of nominees to replace the four members when it meets next month.
Each of the departing board members, as did Thorp, received resolutions acknowledging their contributions to the university and thanks from their colleagues for their service, which spanned a particularly tough time on campus.
Hargrove acknowledged the tough past couple of years Thorp spent dealing with athletic and academic scandals that damaged the reputation of the school.
He said Thorp stood strong through it all, never wavering in his conviction and his commitment to the university.
“I can’t thank you enough,” Hargrove said. “It’s a great loss for Carolina.”
If the loss of Thorp and four members of the university’s governing board were all, it would be a lot.
But there are more changes coming, including one involving Provost Bruce Carney, who is stepping down to return to the faculty.
Thorp thanked Carney for hiring him to chair the Chemistry Department and noted the many hats Carney has worn at the university over the years, including interim dean of the College of Arts and Sciences and interim provost before his appointment to the permanent post.
“I’m just glad we got through all of this without having to make you interim chancellor,” Thorp quipped.
Also, longtime administrator Carolyn Elfland, associate chancellor of campus services, is heading to retirement after more than four decades in various key roles on campus.
And Jackie Overton is ending her run as chairwoman of the Employee Forum, a post that has been critical in recent years as Thorp sought to improve relations between UNC and workers on campus, particularly in the area of housekeeping.
Both Elfland, who Thorp noted was often the last to leave the administration building, and Overton received praise for their years of service and their commitment to the university.
“Jackie, I love you,” Thorp said. “Thank you for all you do for Carolina.”
While the farewells took center stage on Thursday, the board did gain one new member in Student Body President Christy Lambden, who will serve as an ex-officio member of the university’s governing board.
The board also shared the names of its likely new officers.
Lowry Caudill appears set to replace Hargrove as chairman of the 13-member board. Scott Gardner is the likely vice chairman and Sallie Shuping-Russell the secretary.
Those names were sent forward by a nominating committee and the board will vote on them in July.