Charges Against UNC BOG Member Parrish Dismissed

***UPDATE: A member of the Wake County Clerk of Court’s Office has told WCHL that the charges against Parrish have been dismissed.***

A member of the UNC Board of Governors is due in court Wednesday morning.

61-year-old R. Doyle Parrish is scheduled to appear in Wake County Court on a simple assault charge following his arrest at his Raleigh home on May 12 after a report was filed by his wife Nancy Parrish – who the report lists as the victim.

READ MORE: UNC Board of Governors Member Arrested in Alleged Domestic Assault

Parrish was appointed to a four-year term on the Board of Governors by the North Carolina House in 2013. Parrish began a leave of absence from the board in July and resigned his post on the search committee, which is looking for the next leader of the UNC system after the board announced in January that Tom Ross would be removed from that position.

READ MORE: Parrish Resigns from UNC Search Committee Amid Domestic Violence Allegations

UNC System Spokesperson Joni Worthington wrote in an e-mail to WCHL on June 29 that, “While many members of the Board of Governors are likely aware of news reports about the allegations regarding Mr. Parrish, this matter remains in the hands of law enforcement and the judicial process, which are in the best position to address it at this time.”

Worthington was responding on behalf of University Governance Committee Chair Joan MacNeill, who was the recipient of WCHL’s original e-mail requesting comment.

READ MORE: Removing a Member of the Board of Governors

University policy states that the Chair of the University Governance Committee, MacNeill in this scenario, would be responsible for submitting a written specification of reasons to consider the board member’s removal.

Clear guidelines are put forward in university policy detailing the removal of a board member for missing a number of meetings or being appointed to a conflicting board, however, there is no clear policy for handling criminal charges being levied against board members.

http://chapelboro.com/news/crime/unc-bog-member-parrish-scheduled-for-court-appearance-wednesday/

NC State Athlete Dorm Draws Concern from UNC Board of Governors

A new residence hall for basketball players at North Carolina State University caused contention at the UNC Board of Governor’s Meeting on Friday.

Three members of the board – Marty Kotis, Bill Webb, and Thom Goolsby – voiced objections to a proposed residence hall, tentatively named Case Commons, because of the building’s price tag.

NC State Chancellor Randy Woodson defended the $15 million proposal for the 62-bed facility.

“Mr. Kotis, I agree 100 percent. And I certainly wouldn’t have approved this project if it was a standard residence hall,” he says. “But the reality is what we’re building is, for lack of a better term, a boutique residence hall.”

The main objection focused on the per-bed cost, checking in at more than $240,000, when compared with the only other new residence hall that has been approved by the board – a 350-bed dorm at Appalachian State with a $32 million projected cost – translating to a nearly $92,000 per-bed cost.

Woodson added the small size of the project is making it more expensive per bed, and he said he wouldn’t have approved the proposal if it were to impact student fees.

The facility will be paid for by what Woodson called “private donors” also known as the NC State athletic boosters – the “Wolfpack Club.”

Per NCAA rules, more than 50 percent of the residence hall must be designated to non-athletes, but Woodson says Case Commons would house the men’s and women’s basketball teams. Woodson adds the residence hall will be located next to athletics support services to allow for easy access to academic assistance for student-athletes.

Ultimately, the board approved the proposal.

There are still more hurdles to be cleared before construction can begin, but design work is scheduled to begin in February. It could still be more than a year-and-a-half before shovels are turning any dirt on the NC State campus for the boutique residence hall for the basketball programs.

Goolsby and Webb, who voted against the residence hall, were two of the members who were at their first Board of Governors meeting. The North Carolina Senate appointed both to four-year terms earlier this year.

System President Tom Ross welcomed all of the new board members during his address.

Ross added his thanks for the lobbying that board members had done in anticipation of the state budget.

“Like the rest of state government, we are eager to see a final state budget put in place,” he says. “But based upon what is going into the conference committee for consideration, we believe that what will come out will eventually provide us with the best university budget we’ve seen in years.”

We are now more than a month into the new fiscal year with no finalized budget plan coming from the legislature. The House and Senate agreed to a continuing resolution in late June to allow the government to continue operating, but that is scheduled to expire on Friday.

Board member R. Doyle Parrish was not in attendance at the meeting as he has taken a leave of absence from the board until the resolution of domestic assault charges. He is due in Wake County Court on August 26.

http://chapelboro.com/news/higher-education/nc-state-athlete-dorm-draws-concern-from-unc-board-of-governors/

Parrish Resigns from UNC Search Committee Amid Domestic Violence Allegations

UNC Board of Governors member 61-year-old R. Doyle Parrish has resigned from the Search Committee looking for the next leader of the UNC System, according to the system website.

Parrish was arrested at his home on Kingsley Road in Raleigh, on May 12, after a report was filed by his wife Nancy Parrish, who was listed as the victim. Parrish was charged with simple assault.

READ MORE: Removing a Member of the Board of Governors

Board Chairman John Fennebresque spoke with the Charlotte Observer, confirming Parrish’s resignation from the Search Committee, adding that Parrish was taking a leave of absence from the board as a whole until his court case is resolved.

UNC System Spokesperson Joni Worthington wrote in an e-mail to WCHL on June 29 that, “While many members of the Board of Governors are likely aware of news reports about the allegations regarding Mr. Parrish, this matter remains in the hands of law enforcement and the judicial process, which are in the best position to address it at this time.”

Worthington was responding on behalf of University Governance Committee Chair Joan MacNeill, who was the recipient of WCHL’s original e-mail requesting comment.

University policy states that the Chair of the University Governance Committee, MacNeill in this scenario, would be responsible for submitting a written specification of reasons to consider the board member’s removal.

READ MORE: UNC Board of Governors Member Arrested in Alleged Domestic Assault

The Wake County Court Calendar shows Parrish’s next court appearance is slated for August 26th.

http://chapelboro.com/news/unc/parrish-resigns-from-unc-search-committee-among-domestic-violence-allegations/

UNC Board of Governors Member Arrested in Alleged Domestic Assault

A member of the UNC Board of Governors was arrested in May for misdemeanor assault of a female, according to police reports.

61-year-old R. Doyle Parrish was arrested at his home on Kingsley Road in Raleigh on May 12 after a report was filed by his wife Nancy Parrish, who was listed as the victim. Parrish was charged with simple assault.

Parrish was appointed to a four-year term on the Board of Governors by the North Carolina House in 2013.

National Institute for Money in State Politics figures show that Parrish donated to campaigns for Thom Tillis, Pat McCrory, Phil Berger, Bev Perdue, and Mike Easley, according to WRAL.

The News & Observer of Raleigh reports Parrish was ordered to be held in the Wake County Jail on a mandatory domestic violence hold for two days. A district court judge on May 18 ordered Parrish released on his promise to appear at his next court date and ordered him to stay away from his wife.

The Wake County Court Calendar shows Parrish’s next court appearance is slated for August 26th.

A UNC System spokesperson says they “have no comment to offer.”

http://chapelboro.com/news/unc/unc-board-of-governors-member-arrested-in-alleged-domestic-assault/

With Cuts Possibly Looming, UNC Centers State Their Cases

Representatives from various UNC-Chapel Hill centers and institutes made presentations to the UNC Board of Governors Thursday in order to retain their state funding in the face of budget cuts – or just to remain alive.

Amidst a crowded room at the Spangler Center Thursday morning, the Board listened to speakers like Christi Hurt of the UNC Women’s Center, who spoke about having only one staffer who works directly with sexual assault victims.

“We truly do need a whole lot more,” she told Board Chair John Fennebresque (who asked, “Don’t you need a hundred?”). “The rest of the Women’s Center staff is trained to provide support, and we also do the work of the prevention efforts throughout the whole center…so the program itself isn’t isolated in one person, but she’s (the only one who is) distinctly trained to provide one-on-one advocacy support.”

The weeklong meetings arose after the state legislature paved the way for $15 million in cuts in last year’s budget.

Another group facing elimination is the Sonya Haynes Center for Black Culture. Director Joseph Jordan reminded the board that the center was created in 1988 from $9 million raised exclusively in private funds.

“It was created at the urging of concerned students, faculty, community and alumni as a center for the arts and cultures of African-Americans and as a site for campus and community service programming,” Jordan said. “In the 26 years since its creation, it has grown to become a major and unique resource for the university and the regional communities.”

UNC Chancellor Carol Folt reiterated that 51 percent of state funding has already been cut since 2009, which has prompted the university to become more aggressive in fundraising.

She said centers like the ones being discussed Thursday were crucial to those fundraising efforts.

“We’re getting ready to go to a multi-billion-dollar campaign – and one of the best ways you do that (is) to raise money for a center, not an office,” she told the Board. “The Stone Center is a vehicle for raising funds – and we are just in the process in developing that whole strategy, and they will be getting support, as will the Women’s Center…

“(These) are big draws for people that like to give to a named place.”

Groups under review may be terminated, lose state funding or could continue operating as it is. Thirty-four groups are under review at 11 UNC system universities.

Numerous students were also in attendance at Thursday’s meeting, carrying signs and wearing black tape over their mouths to protest the threat of funding cuts.

http://chapelboro.com/news/unc/cuts-possibly-looming-unc-centers-state-cases/

Willingham Sues UNC, Asks For Reinstatement

Originally posted 11:10 a.m., July 1, 2014

Former UNC academic adviser Mary Willingham says she has filed a civil lawsuit against the University and asked the university system’s governing board to reinstate her.

Willingham is known as the whistle blower who told CNN in January that UNC admitted athletes who were not academically eligible, and that, in turn, the University is unjustly using athletes for financial gains. She says now that the NCAA has decided to return to campus, she doesn’t want it to hand out further punishment, but instead to use the opportunity to “reform the entire system.”

Vice Chancellor for Communications and Public Affairs at UNC, Joel Curran said, “The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill is aware of the lawsuit filed by former employee Mary Willingham. We respect the right of any current or former employee to speak out on important University and national issues. We believe the facts will demonstrate that Ms. Willingham was treated fairly and appropriately while she was employed at Carolina.”

Willingham told WRAL’s Julia Sims that she has asked to be reinstated by the Board of Governors. In early May, she shared on her website that she had resigned from UNC. She first said she made the decision to leave on April 21 after an hour-long meeting with Chancellor Carol Folt. She said the conversation made her realize there was no more she could do at UNC and that she wanted to continue her fight to correct problems with intercollegiate athletics elsewhere.

Now Willingham says she believes “the NCAA will need some serious help from our historians at UNC (since so many years have passed).”

The NCAA told the University Monday that it has reopened its 2011 investigation that led to punishments handed out to the UNC football team. The team was put on probation until 2015, stripped of 15 scholarships over a three-year period, and ineligible for postseason play for one season.

The intercollegiate association says it reopened the investigation because people who were previously unwilling to speak with them may now be available.

One of those people is former UNC basketball standout Rashad McCants. He told ESPN’s Outside the Lines in early June that tutors wrote papers for him, he remained eligible only because of phony “paper classes”, and that his coaches, including Roy Williams, were fully aware of what was going on.

Former assistant attorney general for national security and partner at Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft, Kenneth Wainstein was hired by the University in January to conduct an external review of any and all academic irregularities. In an update of his investigation given to the Board of Governors on June 20, Wainstein said McCants previously declined to be interview. He said, since the ESPN interviews, another request for an interview has been sent to McCants in hopes that he’s now willing to speak.

Wainstein has also been able to speak with Julius Nyang’oro, the former chair of the African and Afro-American Studies department and his department administrator, Deborah Crowder in his review. Those individuals were quiet during the NCAA’s initial investigation and all other inquiries until Wainstein arrived on campus.

Willingham told WCHL that she and UNC history professor Jay Smith are filing their manuscript with their publisher Tuesday morning before she travels to Washington, D.C. There she says she plans to lobby for athletic reform with meetings scheduled all day Wednesday. She says she doesn’t have any hearings scheduled in D.C. at this time.

The book Smith and Willingham are collaborating on is about the history of the academic scandal at UNC in the African and Afro-American studies department and the illiteracy problems at UNC and at colleges and universities across the nation.

http://chapelboro.com/news/unc/willingham-sues-unc-asks-reinstatement/

Wainstein: ‘Don’t Have Findings Yet’

Story originally posted 10:38 a.m., June 20, 2014

Attorney Kenneth Wainstein told the UNC Board of Governors Friday that not only will he not share findings of his investigation into UNC’s academic irregularities, but that he doesn’t yet have any findings. He says the investigation is ongoing.

“Our investigation is not complete, and until our investigation is complete, we will not have final findings,” Wainstein said. “Those findings, as President Ross said, will be put together into a report, which will be made public at the end of our investigation.”

***Listen to the Complete Update***

That was the first time Wainstein publicly spoke about his investigation.

The 19-year veteran attorney was retained by the University in January after the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation and Orange and Chatham County district attorney Jim Woodall concluded their investigations into UNC’s African and Afro-American (AFAM) Studies Department and its chair Julius Nyang’oro.

That investigation led to the indictment of Nyang’oro for receiving $12,000 to teach a lecture course filled with football players that he instead treated as an independent study requiring only a paper in summer 2011. Woodall said no further charges will be made against Nyang’oro or any other person involved.

Nyang’oro has had his first appearance in court, but his trial is still pending. The University said he has returned the $12,000.

Wainstein said he and his associates are using every resource possible to aid in their findings, which is something he said previous investigations into this topic weren’t able to include.

“We’ve interviewed over 80 people so far—a number of them we’ve interviewed more than one occasion,” Wainstein said. “We’ve collected and searched over 1.5 million emails and electronic documents. We’re also analyzing thousands of student records, including transcripts, going back to the early ‘90s and even into the ‘80s.”

On June 6, former UNC basketball standout Rashad McCants went on ESPN’s “Outside the Lines” and said that tutors wrote papers for him, he remained eligible only because of phony “paper classes” – and that his coaches, including Roy Williams, were fully aware of what was going on.

McCants comments marked the first time someone associated with the UNC men’s basketball program said it, too, was part of the academic scandal.

Wainstein told reporters Friday that McCants is not among the 80 people who have been interviewed, despite the attempt.

“We’ve intended to speak to him,” Wainstein said. “We actually invited him to come in for an interview back in May. At that time, he declined our invitation. He said that at that time he did not want to speak to us. Then he had his interview and spoke publicly. So, we’re hopeful that that is sort of a changed circumstance that might want him to want to speak to us, so we’ve now sent a new letter reiterating our invitation to speak to him. So, we’re hopeful that that will happen.”

Nyang’oro and a long-time department administrator, Deborah Crowder, have been mostly unavailable for questions leading up to this investigation. However, Wainstein says he has received full cooperation from them.

“In terms of their willingness to sit down with us, they’ve made themselves completely available to us; they’ve given us as much time as we’ve asked for and met with us on every occasion we’ve asked them to meet,” Wainstein said.

Wainstein emphasized that this investigation is completely separate from the University, and that the decision was made to keep it that way in order to protect the integrity of the investigation.

He added that his job is only to investigate the academic irregularities and present a report, but not to suggest a course of action to take based on those findings.

“What they’ll do with that, that’s for them to decide,” Wainstein said. “I heard, this morning, President Ross talking about how he’s looking forward to getting the report and getting the findings and then taking any actions that might be pointed up by any of those findings.”

System President Tom Ross said he couldn’t speak to what kind of actions would be taken, because he doesn’t have the report yet. However, he said that he’s said from the beginning that UNC is ready to take any actions necessary.

“When he’s finished, we’ll take the appropriate steps, and we’ll take whatever additional steps are necessary to ensure that nothing like this ever happens again, and then we’ll move on,” President Ross said.

President Ross told the Board, before Wainstein gave his update Friday, that no limitations were placed on Wainstein’s investigation and that he was instructed to go where the information leads him.

“Chancellor Folt and I directed and gave Mr. Wainstein the full authority to follow the facts wherever they lead and to attempt to address definitively how and why academic irregularities occurred at UNC-Chapel Hill,” President Ross said. “

Wainstein told the Board he chooses to use the term “paper classes” when discussing the focus of the investigation. The media has chosen multiple additional terms, including fake classes and no-show classes. He listed many questions he said he and his associates are using as base questions in the investigation, including a major focus on which classes in the AFAM department were independent studies, what was learned in those classes, if there was any inappropriate assistance in the classes, which personnel on campus knew about the irregularities, and many more.

Wainstein is a partner with the Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft law firm’s Washington branch. He had associates Colleen Kukowski and Joseph Jay in attendance with him, who he said are assisting him in the investigation.

No timeframe was given for the conclusion of the investigation, but Wainstein said he hopes to have the investigation wrapped up before the start of the fall semester.

UNC system spokesperson Joni Worthington said the University has not yet received any bills from Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft.

http://chapelboro.com/news/unc/wainstein-dont-findings-yet/

UNC To Receive Wainstein Update

UNC will receive a “high-level” update at Friday’s Board of Governors meeting from the investigator hired to conduct an independent investigation into the University’s past academic and athletic irregularities.

The University hired former federal prosecutor Kenneth Wainstein in January to conduct the investigation.

Wainstein has informed UNC that no factual findings will be shared in the update, because his investigation is not yet complete. He has told the University that he hopes to have the investigation concluded before classes begin this fall.

In response to a request for a statement from UNC about the latest in the investigation and the academic scandal, the University released the following:

“At this time, we think it is best to allow Ken Wainstein to continue his work without the University creating a concurrent review of every claim that arises. Once Mr. Wainstein has completed his work, and makes that public, we will be very interested in sharing our plans for moving forward.”

http://chapelboro.com/news/unc/unc-receive-wainstein-update/

BOG Addresses Substances On Campus

CHAPEL HILL – Earlier this year Governor Pat McCrory challenged the UNC Board of Governors to look at its substance abuse challenges on campus.

Vice Chairman, Frank Grainger, engaged with Governor Pat McCrory, head of the ABC Jim Gardner, Frank Perry from Public Safety, and a few others on Sept. 4 about the strong presence of drugs and alcohol on campus.

“It appears that drugs are becoming more and more prevalent on our campuses” Grainger said.

Grainger says that campuses across the state have been seeing a higher level of substances because drug “pushers” are moving away from the areas they used to frequent.

“Drugs pushers are moving to the campuses more than to the urban parts of the cities now, because they feel that the campuses have more money on them, etcetera and is an easier push for them,” Grainger stated “and the Governor is not messing around with this.”

Another meeting between the Board of Governors and Governor McCrory is scheduled for Tuesday.  Grainger says they plan on working with the campus police chiefs, ABC, and Public safety to coordinate and work together on this issue.

“The president and I have been talking and we’re going to bring all of our police campus chiefs together and let them tell us what’s going on, on their particular campuses so we can report this back” Grainger said.

Along with the drug “pushers,” stores that supply underage students with alcohol will be targeted as a source of the problem.  Working with the ABC and public safety will allow for the BoG to challenge the substances that are coming to campuses.

The next Board of Governor’s meeting is October 11 and will discuss the  September 17 meeting with Governor Pat McCrory.

http://chapelboro.com/news/unc/bog-addresses-substances-on-campus/

UNC BoG Recognizes Former Governor Holshouser

CHAPEL HILL – The UNC BOG recognized our former Governor James Holshouser and honored his life with an award in his name. UNC System President Tom Ross says Holshouser was a great leader and influenced many.

“This University and our entire state lost a consummate public servant, a source of infinite wisdom and a true statesman, this summer with the passing of Jim Holshouser” Ross stated.

Holshouser served as Governor of North Carolina from 1973 to 1977.  He also served on the Board of Governors for the UNC system for more than 30 years where many members have said they valued his thoughts and practices.

“I always told people that Governor Holshouser should have been named Mr. E.F. Hutton, because when he spoke truly everyone listened” Ross said “in word and indeed he personified the true meaning of statesmanship and servant leadership, and our university had no greater friend or stronger ally.”

To honor Holshouser the BOG voted to change the name of their public service award to the Governor Holshouser award for excellence in public service.  This award was originally created in 2007 to encourage, identify, recognize, and reward public service by faculty of the University. Holshouser exemplified many of the characteristics that this award represents.  BOG member Peter Hans says words do not describe the loss of Holshouser.

“President mentioned in his remarks, we lost a giant in June, and a man who epitomizes public service” Hans commented.

The board also recognized another BOG member that recently passed, Julius Chambers.  Chambers was a civil rights attorney for many years along with Chancellor of North Carolina Central University.

For more information on James Holshouser click here.

http://chapelboro.com/news/unc/former-governor-james-holshouser-receives-honors/