Joel R. Williamson Distinguished Professor of Southern Studies

University of North Carolina- Chapel Hill

United States

January 15, 2022


Posting Information Department Arts and Sciences Deans Office - 300100

Posting Open Date 12/03/2021 Application Deadline Open Until Filled Yes Position Type Permanent Faculty Working Title Joel R. Williamson Distinguished Professor of Southern Studies Appointment Type Tenured/Tenure Track Vacancy ID FAC0003814 Full-time/Part-time Full-Time Permanent Hours per week 40 FTE 1 Position Location North Carolina, US Hiring Range Dependent on Experience and/or Qualifications Proposed Start Date 07/01/2022

Primary Purpose of Organizational Unit

The College of Arts & Sciences consists of seventy-one academic departments, curricula, programs, centers, and institutes. The College of Arts & Sciences is administered by the Dean of the College, Terry Rhodes, Professor in the Department of Music, and is divided into four divisions, which are overseen by four Senior Associate Deans. All academic departments and curricula are assigned to one of the following four divisions Fine Arts and Humanities, Natural Sciences and Mathematics, Social Sciences and Global Programs and Undergraduate Education. These Senior Associate Deans, along with the Senior Associate Dean for Operations & Strategy, Senior Associate Dean for Development, Associate Dean for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, Associate Dean for Research & Innovation, and the Director of Communications for the College, all report to the Dean. The Office of the Dean is responsible for the administration and operations of the College under the Office of the Provost.

During its 200+ year history, the College has grown and thrived and is now numbering more than 1,000 faculty teaching over 17,000 undergraduate and 2,400 graduate students. College programming resides in 76 buildings, many of them within the historic heart of the campus, covering 1.5 million assignable square feet. Our faculty includes distinguished scholars, artists, scientists, and performers with international reputations. All are teachers as well as leaders in their fields of intellectual and artistic endeavor. Eighty-one percent of upper-class students choose a major in the College. Eighty-seven percent of the credit hours are taught in the College and there are around fifty different undergraduate degrees offered. Bachelor of Arts (BA), Bachelor of Arts with a Major in Interdisciplinary Studies, Bachelor of Science (B.S.), Bachelor of Fine Arts (B.FA), and Bachelor of Music (B.M.) degrees are offered. Many of these academic programs also allow students to minor at the Bachelor's level as well. Nearly all of the departments and curricula also offer masters and doctoral degrees through the Graduate School.

Position Summary

The College of Arts & Sciences of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill invites applications for a visionary scholar to hold the Joel R. Williamson Distinguished Professorship and serve as the Director of the Center for the Study of the American South (CSAS). The Joel R. Williamson Distinguished Professorship is a prestigious chair representing Carolina's enduring engagement with and commitment to the study of the American South. As part of the strategic plan Carolina Next: Innovations for Public Good, the University reconfirms a campus-wide commitment to its home region through Southern Futures, embracing a strategic opportunity to bring together expertise and resources for building transformative relationships among campus, the state, and the region. As the CSAS Director is at the core of work on campus committed to the American South, they must connect to Southern Futures, guide the vision for its campus-wide commitment, and work as an ambassador for its transformative mission in the region.

The ideal candidate will play a crucial role in this campus priority from a position at the helm of CSAS. Founded nearly 30 years ago, the Center honors the South's long histories of exchange, creativity, conflict, and transformation and explores the history and cultures of its diverse peoples through rigorous scholarship, dialogue, collaboration, and the arts. Its work in publication, research, and teaching is informed by an ethical commitment to the highest standards of equity and critical inquiry. The Center provides intellectual support and strategy for multiple activities and initiatives, including dynamic core programs: Southern Cultures, an award-winning journal published by UNC Press, exploring the history, politics, folklore, literature, and arts of the South; and the Southern Oral History Program, a nationally renowned research project initiated 50 years ago to preserve voices of the American South. The Director's responsibilities for a four-year term include leading the Center in fulfilling its mission of generating and disseminating scholarship that shapes critical conversations about the region. Stewarding and advocating for the Center, the Director oversees the Center's annual budget, manages its staff, works with the College's Arts & Sciences Foundation to raise funds for programs and initiatives, co-directs Southern Futures, and helps to set the Center's communications strategy for both campus and public audiences.

The successful candidate will hold a tenured appointment at the rank of full professor in one of the departments of the College of Arts & Sciences. The candidate will hold the Williamson Distinguished Professorship, which provides generous research support, for as long as they remain a member of UNC's faculty.

Minimum Education and Experience Requirements

Candidates considered for this position should have a consequential record of scholarly achievement and leadership engaging the American South. Essential skills include accomplishments in fostering research partnerships; excellent leadership development and organizational management; demonstrated commitment to enhancing diversity and equal opportunity for individuals from underrepresented groups, as well as working with diverse populations; demonstrated ability to work collaboratively with decision-makers at multiple levels of the institution and beyond campus; and demonstrated strong interpersonal and communication skills, including engaging with possible donors, communicating the vision of the Center, and advocating for the projects and people engaged in them.

Preferred Qualifications, Competencies, and Experience


Special Physical/Mental Requirements Campus Security Authority Responsibilities

This position is designated as a Campus Security Authority in accordance with the Clery Act. This position will be required to report Clery crimes to the Clery Compliance Manager and complete annual training about reporting responsibilities.

Special Instructions

The review of applications will begin on January 15, 2022; position is open until filled.

Applicants should submit the following materials to the search committee: • A letter, addressed to the search committee, explaining how the applicant's professional experience is relevant to this position, describing past involvement with or leadership of programs or activities related to the study of the American South, outlining a vision for leadership for the Center and a demonstrated commitment to diversity • A current curriculum vitae • The names of three people who can comment on the applicant's scholarly standing and qualifications for the role of Center director

Quick Link https: //

Department Contact Name and Title Amy Brann, HR Consultant

Department Contact Telephone or Email Academic Personnel Office Contact Information

If you experience any problems accessing the system or have questions about the application process, please contact the University's Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost office at (919)-962-1091 or send an email to

Please note: The Executive Vice Chancellor & Provost office will not be able to provide specific updates regarding position or application status.

If you have any questions about the job requirements or the hiring department notify the Department Contact.

Equal Opportunity Employer Statement

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill is an equal opportunity and affirmative action employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to age, color, disability, gender, gender expression, gender identity, genetic information, national origin, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, or status as a protected veteran.

Applicant Documents

Required Documents

  • Curriculum Vitae / Resume
  • Cover Letter
  • List of References
  • Optional Documents

    Supplemental Questions

    Required fields are indicated with an asterisk ().

  • What is your highest degree?
  • PhD
  • MD
  • PharmD
  • DDS
  • DVM
  • JD
  • Masters
  • Other
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