UNC System Taps Greenville Native Philip Rogers As Next ECU Chancellor

Dec 18, 2020

At 37, Philip Rogers is ECU's youngest chancellor. He will start in March 2021.
Credit Cliff Hollis / East Carolina University

East Carolina University has its newest chancellor.

The UNC System Board of Governors has hired Philip Rogers, a Greenville native, as the next leader of ECU. He will be the 12th chancellor in the school's history.

UNC System President Peter Hans congratulated Rogers on his homecoming.

“Pirate nation may stretch from sea to shining sea, but Greenville is the capital,” Hans said. “And to lead ECU, you need to understand it through the eyes of the people who built it, the generations of North Carolinians who fought for it through hard times and good.”

Rogers served as chief of staff to ECU's chancellor during the Great Recession. He currently works for the American Council on Education, a Washington, D.C.-based non-profit which advocates for higher education.

At 37, Rogers is the university's youngest chancellor.

He wrote his doctoral dissertation on public colleges in financial distress, and says he will use his knowledge and relationships to navigate through the challenges of the pandemic. In addition to his doctorate from the University of Pennsylvania, Rogers holds a master's degree in public administration from UNC-Chapel Hill and a bachelor's degree in communications from Wake Forest.

“ECU represents the heart and soul of who I am as a person, as a leader,” Rogers said. “And it's not just a place where I worked, it's not just a place where my wife attended school, it's literally who we are. It's the core of who we are.”

Rogers will take over for interim Chancellor Ron Mitchelson on March 15, 2021.

Correction: The original version of this story stated that UNC President Peter Hans was exercising a new authority by nominating Chancellor Rogers. That authority does not take effect until after this search.