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Press Release

CULLOWHEE – Western Carolina University announced Thursday, Dec. 21, the appointment of a 22-member search committee that will recommend a successor to Chancellor David O. Belcher.

The search committee includes representatives of the WCU Board of Trustees, faculty, staff, administration and students, as well as alumni and community members. The committee includes one non-voting member from the University of North Carolina Board of Governors – David Powers, who serves as the board’s liaison to WCU.

Alison Morrison-Shetlar, who currently is serving as provost and vice chancellor for academic affairs at WCU, will assume the role of acting chancellor on Jan. 1, 2018. Belcher plans to go on medical leave effective Dec. 31. He has served as chancellor since 2011.

“While some may view the role of this committee – the selection of a leader to follow in the footsteps of David Belcher – as challenging, I view it as an opportunity,” said Pat Kaemmerling, search committee co-chair and member of the WCU Board of Trustees. “The best way to honor Chancellor Belcher’s leadership is to keep the momentum of Western Carolina moving forward. This committee will have the opportunity to identify a leader who will continue the incredible upward trajectory that Western Carolina University has enjoyed and who will ensure that this institution remains true to its commitment to ensure access to the benefits of higher education.”

The search committee will recommend finalists to the full WCU Board of Trustees. The board must then recommend three finalists to UNC President Margaret Spellings, who will recommend one candidate to the UNC Board of Governors for approval.

The Western Carolina University Chancellor Search Committee consists of:

  • Pat Kaemmerling, search committee co-chair and chair of the WCU Board of Trustees
  • Bryant Kinney, search committee co-chair and vice chair of the WCU Board of Trustees
  • Kellie Angelo Monteith, assistant vice chancellor for student affairs, WCU
  • Gorham Bradley, former director of the WCU Catamount Club and current commercial risk adviser for Stanberry Insurance of Western North Carolina
  • Casey Cooper, CEO, Cherokee Indian Hospital
  • Keith Corzine, assistant vice chancellor for student affairs, WCU
  • Ken Hughes, member, WCU Foundation Board
  • George Little, former member of the WCU Board of Trustees and current member of the UNC Pembroke Board of Trustees
  • Ricardo Nazario-Colon, chief diversity officer, WCU
  • Kenny Messer, secretary of the WCU Board of Trustees
  • Chris Parrish, associate director of undergraduate admissions and former Staff Senate chair, WCU
  • Bob Roberts, member, WCU Board of Trustees
  • Robin Pate, president, WCU Alumni Association
  • David Powers, member, UNC Board of Governors (and WCU liaison)
  • Brandon Robinson, chair of the WCU Board of Visitors
  • David Shapiro, Robert Lee Madison Distinguished Professor of Communication Sciences and Disorders, WCU
  • Katherine Spalding, president, WCU Student Government Association
  • Wes Stone, associate professor of engineering and technology, WCU
  • Vicki Szabo, associate professor of history, WCU
  • Kevin Trudell, president, WCU Graduate Student Association
  • Teresa Williams, former chair of the WCU Board of Trustees
  • Bill Yang, associate professor of electrical engineering and former Faculty Senate chair, WCU