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Chair Of UNC's Board Of Governors Defends Op-Ed

Lisa Philip

Tensions on the UNC Board of Governors remain high, a month after the board's chairman wrote an op-ed calling for the board to be united.

In the December op-ed, Chairman Louis Bissette called on the board to unite while allowing UNC system leaders to 'do their job.'

The board has been criticized in recent months for micro-managing, and media reports have detailed infighting between members.

Bob Rucho, a former Republican state senator who joined the board last year, asked Bissette about his op-ed at the board's full meeting on Friday.

“There are a number of board members that feel we need to understand why our Board of Governor’s chairman made a public comment critical of the board, in some estimations, rather than consulting with the board members directly,” Rucho said.

Bissette said his editorial wasn't meant to offend anyone. But he also defended his right to publicly comment about the board.

“I’m not asking you to consult with me on any time you want to speak,” he said. “You’re responsible, equal members of this board, and you have a right to express your opinion.”

Lisa Philip is an occasional contributor to WUNC. Previously, she covered education for the station and covered schools in Howard County, Maryland for the Baltimore Sun newspapers.
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