Former Director John Sanders to Receive UNC Lifetime Achievement Award

John Sanders at the School of Government

On February 16, the UNC Retired Faculty Association will present John L. Sanders with the 2017 Jonathan B. Howes Lifetime Achievement Award at a ceremony at the UNC Friday Center. The award honors the life and work of Jonathan B. Howes and rewards civic engagement and public service by faculty of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

The award honors service and achievements within the University and beyond and reocognizes faculty for their judgement, ethical values, and courage in the pursuit of worthy goals. The award is fittingly named for Howe, who served as director of the UNC Center for Urban and Regional Studies from 1970 to 1993, during which time he also served on the Chapel Hill Town Council and as mayor of Chapel Hill. He was appointed by Governor Jim Hunt as secretary of the NC Department of Environment and Natural Resources. He later returned to UNC-Chapel Hill as special assistant to Chancellors James Moeser and Holden Thorpe.

Sanders was a member of the faculty at the Institute of Government from 1956 to 1994. He began as a research assistant in 1951, joined the faculty in 1956, and became director in 1979. During his time here, he had considerable influence on both the University and the state. Among his contributions are his work with legislative commissions on the reorganization of state government from 1956 to 1961, the Governor's Commission on Education Beyond the High School in 1961, the North Carolina Constitutional Commission from 1958 to 1959, and the North Carolina State Constitutional Study Commission from 1968 to 1969. He served as University Vice President for Planning from 1973 to 1979 and also served as chair of the Chancellor's Advisory Committee and chair of Buildings and Grounds Committee, where he supervised the planning of new buildings, the preservation of historic structures, and the landscaping of the Chapel Hill campus. His influence on preserving North Carolina's historic structures extended to the Capitol building in Raleigh where, as a founding member of the State Capitol Foundation, he served as president from 1976 to 1991. Sanders earned a JD from UNC School of Law.


Published February 1, 2017