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Press Release


CHAPEL HILL, NC – University of North Carolina System Interim President Bill Roper and East Carolina University Board of Trustees Chair Vern Davenport have announced the formation of a 20-member search committee tasked with locating a candidate for the position of chancellor at East Carolina University.

“The persons chosen for the search committee represent respected leaders, administrators, faculty, staff, alumni and students at East Carolina University,” Dr. Roper said. “We are aiming for an open process with maximum input from the many stakeholders and members associated with ECU. I am grateful to those who have agreed to serve on the committee to identify the right candidate for this very important position.”

The committee will work to make recommendations to the full East Carolina University Board of Trustees, which will vote on candidates to recommend to Dr. Roper. Dr. Roper will then recommend a candidate to the UNC System Board of Governors, which will elect the new chancellor. The process is expected to take six to nine months.

Vern Davenport, chair of the ECU Board of Trustees, will chair the search committee.

“We have assembled a search committee who will work together to find strong candidates to serve as the next chancellor of East Carolina University,” he said. “This committee represents the best of ECU – our faculty, staff, students, administration, alumni, donors, and the Greenville community. We hope to garner robust support, not only for a particular group of candidates, but also for this process.

“Our primary responsibility as a committee will be to identify the best candidates who will unite Pirate Nation and who will take our university and region forward. Our focus will be identifying candidates who embrace our mission of student success, public service and regional transformation and who understand the importance of our university to this region, the state and the nation,” Davenport said. “Our university is much too important not be successful in this endeavor.”

On Oct. 31, 2019, Dr. Roper named Dr. Ron Mitchelson to serve as interim chancellor. Mitchelson has served as provost and senior vice chancellor for academic affairs at ECU since 2015. He came to ECU in 1999 as professor and chair of the Department of Geography.

The East Carolina University Chancellor Search Committee will consist of the following individuals:

  • Vern Davenport, chair of the ECU Board of Trustees, will serve as chair of the ECU Chancellor Search Committee. A resident of Raleigh, Davenport is an ECU alumnus (1980 BS Business Administration, 1981 MBA) and Athletics letter winner. He is a partner at NovaQuest Private Equity, a Raleigh-based health care investment firm.
  • Michael Aho of McLean, Virginia; ECU alumnus (2002 BS in Communications), analyst with the U.S. State Department, current chair of the ECU Alumni Association Board, and member of ECU Board of Visitors.
  • Angela Allen of Raleigh; ECU alumna (1981 BA in Computer Science, 1995 MBA), managing partner of A Cubed Consulting, LLC, retired IBM executive, and ECU Alumni Association Distinguished Alumni Award recipient.
  • Michelle Bone of Greenville; ECU alumna (2018 BSBA in Marketing); ECU Staff Senate chair and delegate for UNC System Staff Assembly.
  • Caroline Bevillard of Greenville; senior associate athletics director and senior women’s administrator.
  • Cassandra Burt of Emerald Isle; ECU alumna, philanthropist, member of the Medical and Health Sciences Foundation Board, and the Pirate Club Board.
  • Crystal Chambers of Greenville; vice chair of ECU Faculty, professor in the College of Education.
  • John Cooper of Raleigh; ECU alumnus (1971 BS in Business Administration), founder of Connect C, LLC, and chair of ECU Board of Visitors.
  • Neal Crawford of Greensboro; ECU alumnus (1985 BS in Business Administration), CEO of Carolina State Bank, member of ECU Foundation.
  • Leigh Jeffreys Fanning of Greenville; ECU alumna; retired vice president of R.A. Jeffreys Distributing and member of ECU Board of Trustees.
  • Brian Floyd of Greenville; president of Vidant Medical Center and chief operating officer of Vidant Health Hospitals.
  • Grant Hayes of Greenville; acting provost and senior vice chancellor for academic affairs at ECU, dean and distinguished professor, College of Education.
  • Colin Johnson of Greenville; ECU student body president and member of the ECU Board of Trustees.
  • Chris Locklear of Greenville; ECU alumnus (1997 BS in History; 2001 MS in Education; 2007 EdD in Educational Leadership); currently serving ECU as interim chief of staff.
  • Jason Poole of Fayetteville; ECU alumnus (1999 BS in Accounting and MS in Accounting); member, TRP CPAs, PLLC; and member of ECU Board of Trustees.
  • Jeff Popke of Greenville; chair of the faculty and professor of geography.
  • Jim Segrave of Kinston; ECU alumnus, chairman/owner of flyExclusive, and member of ECU Board of Trustees.
  • Vince Smith of Vienna, Virginia; ECU alumnus (1984 BA in History), Lt. Col (Ret.) US Air Force, Air Force Personnel Security Appeal Board Member /Adjudicator, and member of ECU Board of Trustees.
  • Mark Stacy of Greenville; vice chancellor for health sciences at ECU.
  • Ann Wall of Greenville; Greenville city manager.

The search committee is scheduled to meet at 11 a.m. Dec. 10 in Room 249, the Main Campus Student Center on the campus of East Carolina University to receive their charge from President Roper.