Political Hack Margaret Spellings Appoints Political Hack Cecil Staton Chancellor of ECU | Triangulator | Indy Week
Pin It

Political Hack Margaret Spellings Appoints Political Hack Cecil Staton Chancellor of ECU 

Are you the fair-minded sort who believes it just may be possible that newly appointed UNC system president Margaret Spellings isn't merely a political hack whose motives have zilch to do with advancing academia? Prepare to be disillusioned.

Spellings—a former G.W. Bush administration secretary of education and University of Phoenix board member hired by a Republican-appointed board of governors to replace Tom Ross, who was fired last year for reasons no one ever really explained—provided further evidence of such hackery last month when she made Cecil Staton the future chancellor of East Carolina University.

click to enlarge margaret_sepllings.jpg

Former INDY staff writer Billy Ball, who is now with N.C. Policy Watch, took a deep dive into Staton's past earlier this week. On the surface, some of Staton's background is impressive. He has a business degree from Oxford. He's a successful broadcasting and publishing entrepreneur who's wielded some academic fundraising clout. He was an associate professor and provost for twelve years at Mercer University in Georgia. This past April, he was hired as the interim president of Georgia's Valdosta State University.

His political past, however, does not look so benign—even on the surface.

As a five-term Republican member of the Georgia Senate, Staton moved millions in taxpayer dollars to Mercer, the private university that employed him. He authored a voter ID bill that a federal judge likened to a "poll tax." He was also notorious for pushing police crackdowns on immigrants.

Most bizarrely, he was involved in an email scandal, in which the then-senator allegedly used a fake account and name to spread attacks about a political rival.

"We know Ms. Spellings was a political appointee who has had nothing really to do with advancing academia," N.C. NAACP president William Barber told Ball. "Now it seems birds of a feather flock together."

Faculty members are outraged, but—surprise!—their anger is being brushed off by the board of governors. Staton, who starts in July, will earn an annual salary of $520,000. That makes him the third-highest-paid chancellor in the state.

triangulator@indyweek.com

Comments (3)

Showing 1-3 of 3

Add a comment

 
Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-3 of 3

Add a comment

INDY Week publishes all kinds of comments, but we don't publish everything.

  • Comments that are not contributing to the conversation will be removed.
  • Comments that include ad hominem attacks will also be removed.
  • Please do not copy and paste the full text of a press release.

Permitted HTML:
  • To create paragraphs in your comment, type <p> at the start of a paragraph and </p> at the end of each paragraph.
  • To create bold text, type <b>bolded text</b> (please note the closing tag, </b>).
  • To create italicized text, type <i>italicized text</i> (please note the closing tag, </i>).
  • Proper web addresses will automatically become links.

Latest in Triangulator



Twitter Activity

Comments

Update: Mr. Debnam contributed to my campaign through PayPal. However, I returned the contribution. Just wanted to provide this clarification. …

by NoRezoning on As of July 28, Raleigh City Council Candidates Had Raised About $280,000. Bonner Gaylord Accounted for Almost Half of That Total. (Triangulator)

I dropped my subscription to the N&O after they wrote a love letter to Art Pope because the guy who …

by SomeCallMe...Tim on In Pursuit of Clicks, the N&O Cuts Back on Performing Arts Reviews (Triangulator)

Most Recent Comments

Update: Mr. Debnam contributed to my campaign through PayPal. However, I returned the contribution. Just wanted to provide this clarification. …

by NoRezoning on As of July 28, Raleigh City Council Candidates Had Raised About $280,000. Bonner Gaylord Accounted for Almost Half of That Total. (Triangulator)

I dropped my subscription to the N&O after they wrote a love letter to Art Pope because the guy who …

by SomeCallMe...Tim on In Pursuit of Clicks, the N&O Cuts Back on Performing Arts Reviews (Triangulator)

@Douglas Smith: Removing monuments that valorize literal traitors and people who defended the institution of slavery is not anything like …

by vtcaconc on Demonstrators Toppled One of North Carolina’s Confederate Monuments. Now the State Needs to Finish the Job. (Triangulator)

"Every record has been destroyed or falsified, every book rewritten, every picture has been repainted, every statue and street building …

by Douglas Smith on Demonstrators Toppled One of North Carolina’s Confederate Monuments. Now the State Needs to Finish the Job. (Triangulator)

Welcome to high dollar white hipster condos durham!

by Bluetrain on Batalá Durham Held Another Rehearsal at Central Park. The Cops Were Called. (Triangulator)

© 2017 Indy Week • 320 E. Chapel Hill St., Suite 200, Durham, NC 27701 • phone 919-286-1972 • fax 919-286-4274
RSS Feeds | Powered by Foundation