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Leslie Chambers Strohm, Carolina’s vice chancellor and general counsel, has been named vice president for strategy and general counsel at the University of Louisville.

Strohm, who has more than three decades of experience representing research universities, academic medical centers and health-care related clients across North America, joined UNC-Chapel Hill in 2003. She will remain at Carolina until mid-January prior to assuming her new duties.

“I am grateful that while contemplating this new opportunity at Louisville, Leslie decided to stay with us through the end of the independent investigation led by Kenneth Wainstein,” Chancellor Carol L. Folt said in a campus email message. “I am excited for Leslie and her opportunity to pursue significant professional growth in new areas of administration at another respected institution located in a city she calls home, close to family and friends. I understand and respect her decision, and she leaves with our very best wishes.

Strohm came to Carolina from Sonnenschein Nath & Rosenthal (now Dentons), where she was a partner in a 600-member law firm that was among the nation’s largest. Prior to that, she was deputy general counsel and acting general counsel at Washington University in St. Louis.

Strohm has served three UNC chancellors over more than 11 years. She became general counsel in 2003 and was promoted to vice chancellor in 2005. Strohm is the University’s principal lawyer and leads the Office of University Counsel, which advises the Board of Trustees, administrators, faculty and staff on a wide range of issues, policy matters and initiatives.

“Under Leslie’s leadership, her office successfully teamed with the School of Law on a U.S. Supreme Court brief highlighting the importance of diversity to the educational experience at Carolina, negotiated the development of a new research center in the Galapagos, and worked with the Kenan-Flagler Business School to create the innovative MBA@UNC online degree program,” Folt said. “She also has been a chief counselor to the Carolina leadership during the past four years of our academic and athletic issues.”

Strohm said the Louisville position, created earlier this year, combines playing a key role in developing strategic initiatives with leading the university’s legal office and overseeing the government relations office.

“I am excited about taking on significant new responsibilities at this juncture of my career. My husband and I grew up near Louisville and have been University of Louisville fans since we were children,” Strohm said. “This opportunity brings me home and gives Paul and me the chance to be close to our families. It has been an honor and a privilege to serve such a distinguished university as Carolina. I wish the University and Chancellor Folt all the best in the years ahead.”

Folt thanked Strohm for her devoted and loyal service to Carolina.

“She has been an integral member of my senior leadership team over the past 16 months and a valued colleague,” Folt said. “One of Leslie’s most important accomplishments was assembling a top-flight team of attorneys to do important work throughout our University community. I am confident that we can build on their great work and attract an outstanding successor for this important position.”

Folt said she would announce plans soon for interim leadership in the Office of University Counsel and launch a national search.

Published November 14, 2014