Following a highly contentious 10-month process, the UNC Board of Governors has unanimously elected former U.S. Secretary of Education Margaret Spellings as the new UNC system president, to replace Tom Ross.

Spellings will have a five-year contract with a base salary of $775,000 per year. (Ross’ base salary was $600,000 in 2015.)

Board member Ann Goodnight said more than 230 people submitted applications for the position. In September and October the search committee interviewed 14 of those applicants, finally submitting four names to the full board at its meeting last week. (Spellings was reportedly in attendance at that meeting, though, sparking speculation that the Board had effectively decided on her already.)

Spellings hails from Ann Arbor, Michigan. In addition to serving as Education Secretary, she’s worked in education and public policy for three decades, beginning in Texas. She currently serves as president of the George W. Bush Presidential Center in Dallas.

Governor Pat McCrory issued a brief statement welcoming Spellings to the position:

“As governor I welcome Margaret Spellings to North Carolina and look forward to a great working relationship to further connect our students to unlimited educational and career opportunities so they can each fulfill their potential in our great state.”

WCHL will have more on this developing story throughout the day.