We tackle things like access, affordability, and student success.

Margaret Spellings

A member at Carolina Club, Chapel Hill, N.C., since 2016

BY KATE WAHNSCHAFFE / PHOTO BY ALEX BOERNER — Summer 2018

Who she is: As president of the statewide University of North Carolina system, she oversees the chief executives of the institution’s 17 campuses, bringing expertise from the eight years (2001-2009) she served as White House domestic policy adviser and U.S. secretary of education.

Making changes: Since joining the UNC team two years ago, Spellings has implemented a strategic planning process aimed at improving graduation rates and making the college more affordable. “I had talked about all these issues for decades from a 30,000-foot view, and it was intriguing to come to a place where I could really roll up my sleeves and move the needle quickly.”

Educational philosophy: “What gets measured gets done. I’m all about accountability and being clear about what we want and what we expect. It’s kind of Management 101 comes to higher education.”

The best part: “Seeing how engaged and hungry students are for learning and how optimistic they are about their futures. Being around students is a lot of fun.”

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