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Nelson Ferebee Taylor Residence Hall dedicated

Dedication of Nelson Ferebee Taylor Residence Hall

Cutting the ribbon for the Aug. 3 dedication of the Nelson Ferebee Taylor Residence Hall are Diane Taylor, center, wife of the late chancellor; Board of Trustees Chair Bob Winston, left of Taylor; and Chancellor Holden Thorp, right of Taylor. At the far left are Donald Boulton and Peggy Jablonski, former and current vice chancellors of student affairs, respectively. At far right are Lindy Beauregard, Diane Taylor’s sister, and her husband, Bob Higgins.

The University named an apartment-style south campus residence hall in honor of N. Ferebee Taylor, Carolina’s fifth chancellor, on Aug. 3.

The 115,500-square-foot residence hall is part of the five-building Rams Village Community, which accommodates more than 900 undergraduates. Construction of the complex began in 2004 and was completed in 2006 at a total cost of $88.2 million. Revenues of the housing and residential education department funded the project.

“It is fitting that Ferebee Taylor’s name now graces a residence hall situated in the heart of south campus where so many students live. It was the students who benefitted most from his efforts,” Chancellor Holden Thorp said at the dedication.

Taylor, who served as chancellor from 1972 to 1980, was the first to lead the University under the UNC system structure.

He created a more welcoming climate for women and minorities, dealt with a growing student body and burgeoning research enterprise, coped with budget challenges and rebuilt a connection with the people of the state following the turmoil of the 1960s, Thorp said.

Taylor worked to ensure that Carolina kept the proceeds from the sale of the University’s utilities and that most of the money was earmarked to strengthen the University Libraries. That money led to the construction of Davis Library, an addition for special collections in Wilson Library and an expansion to the Health Sciences Library.

“I don’t think we can overstate the importance of Ferebee Taylor’s commitment and his decision to make our libraries better,” Thorp said. “The quality of any academic research endeavor is tied directly to the quality of the institution’s library collections. And by that measure, Carolina ranks as one of the best.” (The Association of Research Library ranks Carolina 18th among more than 120 research libraries in North America.)

Taylor earned an undergraduate degree in American history from Carolina in 1942 and a law degree cum laude from Harvard University in 1949 after serving as a midshipman in the U.S. Navy during World War II. He returned to Chapel Hill in 1968 as a visiting law professor and continued to teach after he stepped down as chancellor until his retirement in 1991. He died in 2004.

INSIDE THE PRINT EDITION: AUGUST 12, 2009

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