Thomas W. Ross

Last updated
Thomas W. Ross
President of the University of North Carolina
In office
January 1, 2011 January 4, 2016
Preceded by Erskine Bowles
Succeeded by Margaret Spellings
17th President of Davidson College
In office
Preceded by Robert F. Vagt
Succeeded by Carol Quillen
Personal details
Born (1950-06-05) June 5, 1950 (age 69)
Greensboro, North Carolina, U.S.
Political party Democratic
Alma mater Davidson College
University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill

Thomas Warren Ross Sr. is an American public official who served as the president of the University of North Carolina system from 2011 to 2016. He succeeded Erskine Bowles on January 1, 2011. Formerly, he was president of Davidson College, a private North Carolina liberal arts college from August 1, 2007 to January 1, 2011.

University of North Carolina public university system throughout North Carolina, USA

The University of North Carolina is a multi-campus public university system composed of all 16 of North Carolina's public universities, as well as the NC School of Science and Mathematics, the nation's first public residential high school for gifted students. Commonly referred to as the University of North Carolina System or the UNC System to differentiate it from the original campus in Chapel Hill, the university has a total enrollment of over 183,001 students and in 2008 conferred over 75% of all baccalaureate degrees in North Carolina. UNC campuses conferred 43,686 degrees in 2008–2009, the bulk of which were at the bachelor's level, with 31,055 degrees awarded.

Erskine Bowles American businessman

Erskine Boyce Bowles is an American businessman and political figure from North Carolina. He served from 2005 to 2010 as the president of the University of North Carolina system. In 1997–98 he served as White House Chief of Staff and he also ran unsuccessfully for the United States Senate from North Carolina in 2002 and 2004.

Davidson College liberal arts college in Davidson, North Carolina

Davidson College is a private liberal arts college in Davidson, North Carolina.The college has graduated 23 Rhodes Scholars.

Ross, a native of Greensboro, North Carolina, graduated from Davidson in 1972, as did his father in 1937 and his children in 1999 and 2001. In 1975, he graduated with honors from the University of North Carolina School of Law. Ross became an attorney, chief of staff to Congressman Robin Britt, a state superior court judge for 17 years, director of the North Carolina Administrative Office of the Courts, and executive director of the Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation in Winston-Salem (2001–2007). He is a former chairman of the UNC Greensboro Board of Trustees.

Greensboro, North Carolina City in North Carolina, United States

Greensboro is a city in the U.S. state of North Carolina. It is the 3rd-most populous city in North Carolina, the 68th-most populous city in the United States, and the county seat and largest city in Guilford County and the surrounding Piedmont Triad metropolitan region. As of the 2010 census, the city population was 269,666, and in 2015 the estimated population was 285,342. Three major interstate highways in the Piedmont region of central North Carolina were built to intersect at this city.

University of North Carolina School of Law law school

The University of North Carolina School of Law is a professional school within the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Established in 1845, Carolina Law is among the oldest law schools in the nation and is the oldest law school in North Carolina. It is consistently ranked in the top-tier of law schools, its U.S. News current rank being tied for number 34.

In common law systems, a superior court is a court of general competence which typically has unlimited jurisdiction with regard to civil and criminal legal cases. A superior court is "superior" relative to a court with limited jurisdiction, which is restricted to civil cases involving monetary amounts with a specific limit, or criminal cases involving offenses of a less serious nature. A superior court may hear appeals from lower courts.

Ross is the recipient of the William Rehnquist Award for Judicial Excellence, the Boy Scouts of America Distinguished Eagle Scout Award, Governing Magazine's National Public Official of the Year award (one of ten, 1994), and the Order of the Long Leaf Pine. [1]

William Rehnquist Chief Justice of the United States

William Hubbs Rehnquist was an American jurist and lawyer who served on the Supreme Court of the United States for 33 years, first as an Associate Justice from 1972 to 1986, and then as the 16th Chief Justice of the United States from 1986 until his death in 2005. Considered a conservative, Rehnquist favored a conception of federalism that emphasized the Tenth Amendment's reservation of powers to the states. Under this view of federalism, the court, for the first time since the 1930s, struck down an act of Congress as exceeding its power under the Commerce Clause.

Boy Scouts of America Scouting organization in the United States

The Boy Scouts of America (BSA) is the largest scouting organization and one of the largest youth organizations in the United States, with about 2.3 million youth participants and about one million adult volunteers. The BSA was founded in 1910, and since then, about 110 million Americans participated in BSA programs at some time in their lives. BSA is part of the international Scout Movement and became a founding member organization of the World Organization of the Scout Movement in 1922.

Distinguished Eagle Scout Award

The Distinguished Eagle Scout Award (DESA) is a distinguished service award of the Boy Scouts of America (BSA). It is awarded to an Eagle Scout for distinguished service in his profession and to his community for a period of at least 25 years after attaining the level of Eagle Scout. Other requirements include significant accomplishment in one's career and a solid record of continued community volunteer involvement. It is one of only two BSA awards given to adults that is dependent upon the recipient's having been awarded Eagle Scout as a youth; the other is the NESA Outstanding Eagle Scout Award (NOESA). Recipients of the DESA are known as Distinguished Eagle Scouts.

Ross is known for his controversial sentence of a non-violent offender to 160 years in prison. [2] In 1989, he sentenced Derek Twyman (a Canadian citizen living in North Carolina) to 160 years in prison for non-violent property crimes. In 2016, 27 years later, he was surprised to hear that Mr. Twyman was still in prison. The following year, Ross helped obtain parole for Mr. Twyman who was able to return to Canada that summer.

On August 26, 2010, Ross was elected president of the University of North Carolina system. [3] [4] [5]

On June 6, 2015, Ross delivered the commencement address at the North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics, a UNC member institution. [6]

North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics

North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics (NCSSM) is a two-year, public residential high school located in Durham, North Carolina, US, that focuses on the intensive study of science, mathematics and technology. The prestigious school accepts rising juniors from across North Carolina and enrolls them through senior year. Though NCSSM is a public school, enrollment is limited, and applicants undergo a highly competitive review process prior to admission. NCSSM is a founding member of the National Consortium for Specialized Secondary Schools of Mathematics, Science and Technology (NCSSSMST) and a constituent institution of the University of North Carolina system.

Ross was fired as President by the University of North Carolina Board of Governors; he publicly stated that his departure was not voluntary. [7] His last day at the University of North Carolina was January 3, 2016. [8]

In an article on the Washington Post on May 18, 2016, as of July 1, 2016, Ross will become the president of the Volcker Alliance, a nonpartisan organization aimed at rebuilding public trust in government that was founded by Paul Volcker. [9]

Ross was named the first Terry Sanford Distinguished Fellow at Duke University’s Sanford School of Public Policy in 2016. [10]

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The Piedmont Triad is a north-central region of the U.S. state of North Carolina that consists of the area within and surrounding the three major parts: Greensboro, Winston-Salem, and High Point. This close group or "Tree" of cities lies in the Piedmont geographical region of the United States and forms the basis of the Greensboro–Winston-Salem–High Point Combined Statistical Area. As of 2012, the Piedmont Triad has an estimated population of 1,611,243 making it the 33rd largest combined statistical area in the United States.

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Winston-Salem State University (WSSU), a constituent institution of the University of North Carolina, is a historically black public research university located in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, United States. It is a member-school of the Thurgood Marshall College Fund. WSSU is an accredited university offering baccalaureate and graduate programs to a diverse student population.

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  3. News & Observer: Davidson president to lead UNC system Archived 2010-08-27 at the Wayback Machine
  4. News & Observer: It's official: Ross is the new UNC president Archived 2010-08-27 at the Wayback Machine
  5. UNC Press release: Ross Elected President of the University of North Carolina
  6. "Sending Off Class Of 2015 To Lead And Help Others". North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics. NCSSM. Retrieved 9 June 2015.
  7. Hodge, Blake (Oct 20, 2015). "Tom Ross on UNC Presidential Search: 'I've Stayed Out of It'". Chapelboro . Retrieved November 1, 2018.
  8. Hodge, Blake (Dec 11, 2015). "UNC Board of Governors Elects New Chair and Interim President Amid Protest". Chapelboro .
  9. News & Observer
  10. "UNC President Emeritus Ross Named Sanford Fellow at Duke | Duke University Sanford School of Public Policy". Retrieved 2016-12-08.