John P. Evans, a longtime faculty member and administrator who has helped oversee a number of special projects, has been tapped to be executive director of Carolina North, the planned research park on University property two miles north of the campus.
Evans, who is the Hettleman Professor of Business in the Kenan-Flagler Business School, begins the new post Aug. 1. Chancellor James Moeser, who announced the move during a meeting of the UNC Board of Trustees’ buildings and grounds committee this week, said UNC needed one person to focus entirely on Carolina North issues and coordinate campus efforts.
Evans “shares my belief that Carolina North represents the future of the University and is our highest priority,” Moeser said. “I am grateful for his willingness to embrace this new challenge to create opportunities for amazing discovery and innovation.”
As executive director, with an initial appointment of two years, Evans will take on the overall daily responsibility for leading the planning and implementation of Carolina North.
In the short term, that responsibility will involve coordinating the University’s participation in the Leadership Advisory Committee, on which Evans has been serving. Moeser created the advisory committee this year to get community input on Carolina North from a broad range of interests. The committee was asked to develop principles that will guide the University in preparing plans for submission to the local governing bodies as part of the regulatory process.
Ken Broun, Henry Brandis Professor of Law at UNC and former Chapel Hill mayor, is facilitating the advisory committee, which includes representatives from the towns of Chapel Hill and Carrboro, the Chapel Hill-Carrboro Chamber of Commerce, Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools, Orange County, EmPOWERment, the State Department of Transportation, the governor’s office, the Orange Water and Sewer Authority, and the University.
Moeser said the most important part of Evans’ new job will begin when the Leadership Advisory Committee finishes its work and issues its final report. Then Evans will lead the University’s efforts to take that community feedback into account as proposals are developed for zoning and development plan applications to the towns of Chapel Hill and Carrboro.
Evans will report to Moeser and work with Tony Waldrop ’74, vice chancellor for research and economic development, and David Perry, interim vice chancellor for finance and administration, on the overall planning for Carolina North.
Evans, a faculty member since 1970, has been closely involved with the University’s planning for Carolina North for several years and previously served as special assistant to the chancellor on Carolina North. He coordinated those efforts with a consultant to examine potential development options for the property. Evans also was a co-convener of a campus advisory committee on the Carolina North tract that was created by Moeser’s predecessor, the late Michael Hooker ’69, and continued under Interim Chancellor William O. McCoy ’55.
Evans served more than a year as interim vice chancellor for finance and administration. He was dean of the Kenan-Flagler Business School from 1978 to 1987 and interim dean in 1997 and also in 2003. He is a former faculty representative on the General Alumni Association’s Board of Directors, and he will continue for two more years as Carolina’s faculty representative to the Atlantic Coast Conference and the National Collegiate Athletics Association.
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