George C. “Chuck” Wooten receives state’s Barry K. Sanders Award

CULLOWHEE — The University of North Carolina Board of Governors gave its approval Friday (Jan. 12) to the appointment of George C. “Chuck” Wooten as Western Carolina University’s new vice chancellor for administration and finance.

Wooten succeeds C. Joseph Carter as the university’s chief finance officer. Carter retired in December after 23 years as vice chancellor of business affairs. The Division of Business Affairs was recently renamed the Division of Administration and Finance to more accurately reflect the focus of its offices.

Wooten’s appointment was approved by WCU’s board of trustees in December.

Western’s Division of Administration and Finance is responsible for administering all the university’s financial and business services functions, including the budget office, purchasing, dining services, housing facilities, human resources, physical plant, university police, and the Ramsey Regional Activity Center. The vice chancellor of administration and finance reports to the chancellor and is the principal adviser to him on all the division’s units.

A native of Iredell County, Wooten graduated from WCU in 1973 with a bachelor’s degree in business administration, and received a master’s degree in political science at Appalachian State University in 1979.

Wooten worked as a systems accountant in the state treasurer’s office from 1973 to 1975, when he became finance officer for Iredell County. He was named Iredell County manager in 1979 and served in that capacity until his appointment as WCU controller in June 1980. Wooten was promoted to assistant vice chancellor for business affairs in 1987, and he became associate vice chancellor in 1996.

Last October, Wooten was named the recipient of North Carolina state government’s Barry K. Sanders Award, an honor presented annually to a state employee who demonstrates outstanding performance in the area of budget, planning or agency management.

Wooten was the recipient of WCU’s Paul A. Reid Distinguished Service Award, given annually to a member of the university’s administrative staff, in 1995.

Wooten was chosen for the vice chancellor position following a national search for candidates. The search committee was chaired by Richard Collings, WCU vice chancellor for academic affairs.

Wooten lives in Sylva with his wife, Kathy, a kindergarten teacher at Fairview Elementary School.