One of the leaders of the University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG), Chancellor Franklin D. Gilliam, Jr., being named one of the 2019 Power Players in the Triad Business Journal, the Triad’s edition of American City Business Journals. These publications reach millions of readers each week and each community that has one is treated to dozens of business-oriented headlines each month.
Gilliam was elected to join the University as the eleventh Chancellor in mid-2015. He took the office in September of that same year. He worked as the Dean of the prestigious UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs, worked as a professor of Public Policy and Political Science at UCLA, and his academic portfolio includes research into strategic communications, public policy, electoral politics, and racial and ethnic politics. His prior experience in both higher education and public universities in a range of positions, totaled more than 30 years before he joined the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. Gilliam has won and been nominated for numerous awards, from the 2015 Upton Sinclair Award by the Liberty Hill Foundation for his work related to equity issues, to his nominations for the UCLA’s Luckman Distinguished Teaching Award, to past recognition by the Triad Business Journal for being one of the region’s Most Admired CEOs, joining other top leaders whose leadership and philanthropy has uplifted their workplace.
This honor is awarded to key leaders who don’t just have impactful ideas in theory, but who put their ideas to the test and implement them in ways that make the Triad a better place and keep it innovative. Specifically, the Triad Business Journal honors Chancellor Gilliam’s leadership and actions in implementing the Millennial Campus initiative and enhancing research opportunities through a two-year grant that supplies UNCG and N.C. A&T with just under half a million dollars aimed at ultimately creating a high-speed data network. UNCG was awarded the brunt of the funds, gaining over $350,000 dollars, while $142,000 dollars are going to be managed by A&T as a “sub-award”. These funds will support inter-institutional research done by an assortment of researchers by affording access to dedicated, high-performance computing resources which eliminates various problems that may arise from using other, existing resources, especially problems that arise not from lower-quality equipment in the first place, but owe their origins to networks that deal with administrative, entertainment, and other non-essential data.
Gilliam’s leadership hasn’t just resulted in new research opportunities and new grants being awarded to the university. Under the Chancellor’s leadership, the number of students who’ve enrolled in the fall has reached a record high: 20,196. This, coupled with recognition from The Chronicle of Higher Education and The Education Trust, has shown that the Chancellor’s leadership has merited the trust of students, journalists, researchers, and business leaders alike, as well as factoring into recognition won by the University such as when the United States News & World Report ranked UNCG number one statewide and number 27 nationwide for its successful efforts to enroll and graduate students from disadvantaged backgrounds.