Search process begins for next chancellor

The Chancellor Search Committee of UNCSA held its first meeting on Wednesday and has begun its work to find the ninth chancellor of the conservatory. Bill Roper, interim president of the University of North Carolina System, launched the search, telling the 20-member search committee by phone that they will play an essential role in selecting UNCSA’s next leader.

“The UNC School of the Arts is one of the gems of the UNC System, so it’s important that the next chancellor be a respected professional with a deep commitment to the arts and higher education,” said Roper. “Finding the right leader further allows the School of the Arts to build on the incredible progress made during Lindsay Bierman’s service as chancellor and this is the right group to get the job done. I look forward to working with the search committee in the months to come.”

The UNC School of the Arts is one of the gems of the UNC System, so it’s important that the next chancellor be a respected professional with a deep commitment to the arts and higher education.

Bill Roper, interim president of the UNC System.

The search process is a joint effort between the committee, chaired by UNCSA Board of Trustees Chair Ralph Womble, the Board of Trustees and the UNC System Office. The committee will recommend two unranked candidates to the UNCSA Board of Trustees. The Board of Trustees will make its recommendations to Roper, who will nominate one candidate for approval by the UNC Board of Governors. The Board of Governors is expected to approve the chancellor selection at its meeting on May 20, 2020.

Scott Murray, assistant vice president for executive search and leadership programs for the UNC System, presented a timeline for the search. Community forums will begin in mid-November to seek input from key stakeholders and the public into the state of the campus; the role of the chancellor; and the background, experience and skill sets for candidates. Dates for the public forums will be announced. The latest information about the search can be found online, and comments can be submitted there.

Buffkin Baker, a national search firm with higher education, entertainment and media clients, has been hired to assist the search. Buffkin Baker has offices in Winston-Salem; New York; Washington, D.C.; and Nashville.

In addition to Womble, the search committee includes student, alumni, faculty, staff, community and board representation. As announced in September, its members include:

  • Phillip Horne, Elizabeth Madden and Erna Womble representing the Board of Trustees;
  • Student Government President Maura Wetzel;
  • Alumni representatives Erin Edge and Mark Land;
  • UNCSA Foundation Board representatives Peter Juran and Nola Miller;
  • Faculty representatives Cameron Knight, Beth Thompson and Mike Wakeford;
  • Staff representatives Susan Jaffe, Edward J. Lewis III and Elizabeth White;
  • Community members John Hoemann, Jerri Irby, Charlie Lucas and Anne Rainey Rokahr; and
  • Ex-officio member Thomas S. Kenan III.

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October 31, 2019

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