UNC’s Board of Trustees held a special meeting on Monday morning to swear in new members and appoint a new chair.

The university’s Board of Trustees welcomed five new members to their ranks while reappointing one. Allie Ray McCullen returns to the board for a second term after being initially appointed in 2015. Teresa Artis Neal, David Boliek Jr., Gene Davis Jr., Ralph Meekins, and John Preyer were all sworn in for their first terms.

Chairman Haywood Cochran ended his time in the position after two years. Vice Chair Chuck Duckett and trustee member Richard Stevens were the two candidates for the position, but Duckett ceded the appointment to Stevens at the start of the meeting.

“I’ve always said I will support the unification and will of this board,” said Duckett, “and at this time I’m going to withdraw my candidacy and ask that we support Richard Stevens.”

Stevens has been chairman on UNC’s Board of Trustees before, during his first stint on the board from 1995 to 2003. He was re-elected as a member in 2017 after serving five terms in the state senate.

A new UNC Board of Governors’ rule has eliminated the trustees’ nominating committee for officer positions. To work around this, Stevens asked the board to postpone officer elections until their next full meeting to allow time to individually meet with the board members.

“I want to sit down and talk with each and every one of you,” Stevens told them, “about your interests, the parts of the university you especially want to work on. Then I’ll try to put a team together of officers and bring you that slate at the meeting at the end of July.”

All the new trustees’ terms will run through June 2023, with Stevens’ term ending in 2021.