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Bob Blouin to step down as UNC's provost by end of 2021

Chancellor Carol Folt at an executive committee meeting
Provost Bob Blouin (left) and Chancellor Carol Folt (right) discuss matters relating to the Confederate monument, Silent Sam, during an executive committee meeting on Monday.

Bob Blouin will step down from his role as executive vice chancellor and provost by the end of 2021, once the University names his successor, according to a campus-wide email sent Tuesday. 

The University will begin a nationwide search for the new provost later this month and likely name a replacement by late fall, Chancellor Kevin Guskiewicz said in the email. 

Blouin was named provost in August 2017 and has served in the role throughout the toppling of Silent Sam, the University's controversial fall reopening amid the COVID-19 pandemic and more. He also helped develop Carolina Next: Innovations for Public Good, oversaw the University’s data science initiative and oversaw the planning and implementation of the Carolina Together Roadmap once the pandemic hit. 

"Bob goes the extra mile in everything he does and is routinely the first person in South Building and the last one to leave each day," Guskiewicz said in Tuesday's campus announcement. "I am grateful for his steadfast support and passion for Carolina’s mission to serve our state, nation and the world."

Before he was named provost, Blouin was the dean of UNC's pharmacy school for almost 14 years. He was a faculty member and administrator at the University of Kentucky College of Pharmacy before this, from 1978 to 2003. 

In the campus message, Guskiewicz said Blouin's leadership helped the Eshelman School of Pharmacy become an internationally recognized leader with a larger research portfolio. After stepping down as provost, Blouin will be the pharmacy school's Vaughn and Nancy Bryson Distinguished Professor.

"A well-respected educator, innovator, researcher and administrator, Bob has been a source of unwavering support for the University, guiding some of our most important and challenging work," Guskiewicz said in the announcement.

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