System President Search Called Wide Open

The chair of the UNC System Board of Governors has sought to dispel any public notion that the search for a successor to UNC System President Molly Broad has zeroed in on former White House Chief of Staff Erskine Bowles ’67. Brad Wilson, who also chairs the presidential search committee, said the search process will be “as open as possible.”

In an Aug. 15 letter to the editor of The News & Observer, also sent to the Carolina Alumni Review, Wilson said there is no frontrunner for the job.

Wilson’s letter addressed an N&O report that “Bowles has been . prepped by former UNC President William Friday [’48 (LLB)], who tutored the Charlotte businessman on UNC history and policy.”

Friday “has never suggested or advocated for any individual for the presidency,” Wilson said. “As the search process continues, I would not be surprised to learn that other candidates have talked with Presidents Friday and [Dick] Spangler [’54], as well as President Broad.”

The UNC System has hired Baker-Parker, an Atlanta consulting firm, to help identify potential candidates for the presidency.

In April, Broad announced her decision to retire at the end of this academic year. She took the post in 1997 and after stepping down is expected to be on the faculty of UNC’s School of Government.

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