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Press Release

Experienced executive, former state budget director will begin the role in January

John Hansen Photography

RALEIGH, N.C. – UNC System President Peter Hans named Lee H. Roberts to serve as interim chancellor at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, beginning on January 12.

Roberts will assume the role following the departure of Chancellor Kevin Guskiewicz, who will step down after a five-year tenure at the helm of the nation’s oldest public university. Guskiewicz announced last week that he will become president of Michigan State University in March.

A longtime executive with a record of public service in North Carolina, Roberts brings broad experience in public policy and leadership of complex organizations.

“Public higher education is one of North Carolina’s greatest strengths, and I’m honored to play a role in serving the nation’s first and finest public university,” Roberts said. “Chancellor Guskiewicz and his team have done extraordinary work, and I’m excited to continue supporting the dedicated scholars, staff, and students at Carolina.”

Roberts served as budget director for the state of North Carolina from 2014 to 2016, helping oversee a successful referendum for the largest higher education bond issue since 2000. He has been a member of the UNC Board of Governors since 2021, working closely with System officials to implement a more comprehensive budget model and improve measures of student success. He also served on the State Board of Community Colleges, the State Banking Commission, the Board of Visitors at Duke University’s Sanford School of Public Policy, and the Golden LEAF Foundation Board.

He is the co-founder and managing partner of SharpVue Capital, a North Carolina investment firm that specializes in stewarding institutional funds and growing local economies.

“Lee Roberts is a patient leader, a generous listener, and someone raised with the values of public service,” Hans said. “He knows how to find common ground on challenging issues, and he brings out the best in everyone around him. He’s deeply committed to the university, and I’m excited to work alongside him in supporting the great work happening at Carolina.”

Roberts grew up in Bethesda, Maryland. He holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from Duke University and a law degree from Georgetown University. For the last five years, he has been an instructor at Duke’s Sanford School, where he teaches public budgeting. He was formerly managing director of Cherokee Investment Partners in Raleigh and a managing director of Triangle-based Piedmont Community Bank Holdings. He lives in Raleigh with his wife, Liza, and they have three children, including one currently enrolled in college and a recent college graduate.

“I know that Lee is committed to the state of North Carolina and the important role of public higher education,” Chancellor Guskiewicz said. “I look forward to working with him during our transition. He will build on the incredible work underway by our world-class faculty, dedicated staff, curious students and passionate alumni.”

A full, nationwide search for the chancellor’s role will be launched in the coming months, with active participation from faculty, staff, students, alumni and the broader community. “I’m looking forward to that process and to hearing from so many people committed to Carolina’s future,” Hans said. “It’s an extraordinary institution, and its best days are ahead.”