Dear Campus Community,
I am writing to share the sad news from the UNC System that UNC President Emeritus C.D. Spangler Jr., a Carolina alumnus and devoted champion of affordable access to public higher education in North Carolina, has died.
President Spangler led the UNC System, succeeding Bill Friday in 1986, for 11 years. He was the first in his family to attend college, earned a bachelor’s degree in business from Carolina in 1954, and was inducted into the Order of the Golden Fleece. The University awarded him an honorary doctor of laws degree in 2003.
The UNC System’s announcement, which includes comments by President Margaret Spellings and then Vice President for Communications Wyndham Robertson, notes President Spangler’s distinguished record as a business leader, philanthropist, and public servant. I encourage you to read the full UNC System tribute here.
I am grateful for the advice, guidance and vision for education in North Carolina that he so generously shared with me. UNC-Chapel Hill and our sister UNC campuses have benefitted from remarkable support from President Spangler and the Spangler family foundation that has funded over 120 distinguished professorships.
I hope you will join me in pausing to reflect on President Spangler’s many contributions to North Carolina and offer condolences to his wife, Meredith, daughters, Abigail and Anna, and their families. Anna continues to advance her father’s notable record of public service for education as a member of the UNC Board of Governors.
North Carolina, the UNC System and our University would not be what they are today without the unending contributions of President Spangler.
Carol L. Folt