The University has turned to a faculty member in UNC’s School of Social Work to fill a new position of director of ethics education and policy management.
Kim Strom-Gottfried, who begins the new post Aug. 1, is the Smith P. Theimann Jr. Distinguished Professor of ethics and professional practice. She previously served as the School of Social Work’s interim dean (2000-01) and as director of UNC’s Academic Leadership Program for the Institute for the Arts and Humanities (2008 to June 2016). She came to UNC in 1999.
Strom-Gottfried succeeds Todd Nicolet ’97 (MA), senior associate dean at the Gillings School of Global Public Health, who has served as interim director of ethics and integrity since February. Nicolet also is a former senior associate dean for administration at the School of Government. The new position is a senior administrator post reporting directly to the chancellor.
In addressing the Board of Trustees this week, Chancellor Carol L. Folt said: “I don’t know of any places that have actually tried to say, ‘We’re going to consolidate this into an office.’ It’s really working across institutions to try to streamline it, make it very clear and then use that to improve it.”
The concept for the new post grew out of the work of UNC’s Ethics and Integrity Working Group and its Policy and Procedures Working Group, created following the release of the Wainstein report in October 2014 about UNC’s academic-athletics fraud case.
Folt said that Strom-Gottfried will focus on coordinating ethics programs and reporting mechanisms, along with overseeing management of the University’s policy infrastructure. She also will serve as an advocate for ethics resources and programs, helping identify, coordinate and promote ethics-related opportunities across campus.
In preparing for the new position, the Ethics and Integrity Working Group conducted an exhaustive review of the full range of the University’s existing ethics-related programs, training, practices, regulations, and reporting and compliance mechanisms. The Policy and Procedures Working Group, chaired by Nicolet, conducted an institution-wide review of policies and procedures, developed recommendations for improvements and created a mechanism for their periodic re-evaluation.
Folt said earlier this year that “both groups conducted extensive reviews and confirmed that the campus already has in place a strong array of programs and resources related to ethics and integrity. They did not identify any significant gaps in programs, resources or reporting mechanisms. However, they did make a number of recommendations for continuous improvement and ways to make existing resources more visible and accessible to our campus community.”