April 27, 1999            

Contact: Bob Bruce, 503-725-5714
Source: Joe Cox, 541-346-5700

North Carolina Administrator Appointed OUS Legal Counsel

EUGENE - A prominent North Carolina college administrator and attorney has been named as the new director of legal services and compliance officer for the Oregon University System.

Benjamin E. Rawlins, currently special assistant to the chancellor for legal affairs at North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University (NC A&T), Greensboro, will begin his new post with Oregon's public university system on May 24, Chancellor Joe Cox said today.

"Dr. Rawlins brings unique qualifications and experience to Oregon," Cox said. "He has more than 20 years of experience in the law of higher education at two comprehensive universities and has provided outstanding leadership, sensitivity and direction to campus and community diversity."

"Ben Rawlins understands the complexity of modern universities and the issues they face in the real world," added Dr. Herb Aschkenasy, former president of the Oregon State Board of Higher Education who headed the search committee. "His experience with intellectual property; local, state and federal governments; and philosophy of preventive practice are strong assets for the important role he will play in the future of the Oregon University System."

"We are excited that Mr. Rawlins will be joining the OUS team," said President Dan Bernstine of Portland State University, one the search committee members. "His breadth of legal experience and expertise will be invaluable to all of us. Mr. Rawlins is well respected by his colleagues around the country and we are fortunate that he has decided to move to Oregon."

"Like the other members of the search committee, I was greatly impressed with Ben Rawlins' range of experience in the law of higher education, his obvious intelligence, his sound judgment, and his outstanding qualities as a person and member of the community," noted another search committee member, David Schuman, Oregon deputy attorney general. "Personally and on behalf of the Department of Justice, I am delighted that he has agreed to serve as director of legal affairs for the Oregon University System and as a special assistant attorney general. The system, the Department of Justice, and all of Oregon will benefit from his decision to join us."

A native of North Carolina, Rawlins earned his bachelor's degree from Johnson C. Smith University, Charlotte, N.C.; a law degree from the Georgetown University Law Center, Washington, D.C.; and a master's in public administration from the University of North Carolina (UNC), Chapel Hill. He also has completed coursework at the Professional Development Institute and Institute on Educational Management at Harvard University, and the Government Executive Institute at UNC.

Before his employment in higher education, Rawlins worked as a case analyst for the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and in private practice with the firm of Scupi and Lewis, Attorneys at Law, both in Washington, D.C. Rawlins served in the UNC administration from 1978 to 1983 as acting and assistant affirmative action officer, assistant to the vice chancellor for administration, and director of judicial programs before joining NC A&T.

He currently serves on the North Carolina Banking Commission and on the board of the National Association of College and University Attorneys.

Rawlins will succeed Melinda Grier, who recently left the Oregon University System to become university attorney at the University of Oregon, Eugene.



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