Philip L. Dubois, chancellor emeritus of UNC Charlotte, is among the most respected leaders in higher education. As he moved through the faculty ranks to become a university administrator, Dubois benefited from a number of mentors, and in turn, he embraced the chance to guide junior faculty members in their leadership pursuits.
In recognition of his commitment to advancing the American Council of Education efforts to strengthen America’s postsecondary educational system, Dubois is the 2020 recipient of the ACE Council of Fellows/Fidelity Investments Mentor Award.
As chancellor of UNC Charlotte as well as president of the University of Wyoming, Dubois actively participated in the American Council of Education Fellows Program. During the past three decades, he mentored seven ACE Fellows and nominated two faculty members for program participation: Cheryl Brown, Alfred Bryan, Wilma Henry (co-mentored with former chancellor Jim Woodward), Ryan Johnson, Jeffrey Leak, Barbara Lyman, Karen Morgan, Joseph Morreale and Alan Shoho.
“Philip Dubois has been a friend to the ACE Fellows Program for so long and contributed in so many ways to the success of the program and the growth and professional development of the Fellows he has engaged with,” said Sherri Hughes, assistant vice president for professional learning at ACE. “I am delighted to honor his commitment and generosity with this year’s Council of Fellows/Fidelity Investments Mentor Award.”
"Of all the things I've done as chancellor, helping prepare our future leaders in higher education is surely the most meaningful," said Dubois.
At the time of his retirement on June 30, 2020, Dubois was the senior chancellor in the University of North Carolina System. His legacy includes efforts to build UNC Charlotte’s visibility and support in the Charlotte region; long-range planning for an expected enrollment of 35,000 students; completion of key capital construction and renovation projects in excess of $1.2 billion; improvement in the efficiency and effectiveness of critical business processes; and implementation of an intercollegiate football program starting in the fall of 2013. Applications among freshmen and transfer students grew by 91 percent, while overall enrollment rose by 38 percent.
Dubois’ career in higher education spanned more than 40 years. As a first-generation college student, he earned a bachelor’s degree in political science in 1972 from the University of California, Davis, and a master’s (1974) and doctoral (1978) degree in political science from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
In 1991, Dubois was recruited to UNC Charlotte, where he spent almost six years as provost and vice chancellor for academic affairs, before becoming president of the University of Wyoming in 1997. He returned to UNC Charlotte in 2005 upon being named the institution’s fourth chancellor.