Watson College Dean Van Dempsey Appointed to Governor’s DRIVE Task Force

Van Dempsey, dean of UNCW’s Watson College of Education, has been appointed to serve on Governor Cooper’s DRIVE Task Force. Established through Executive Order 113, the task force is focused on improving equity and inclusion in education, with a particular focus on diversity in the education profession in the state. The task force will submit a report to the Governor with recommendations to reach that goal. 

In addition to serving on the Task Force to Develop a Representative and Inclusive Vision for Education, Dempsey is a member of the DRIVE Task Force Executive Committee and chair of the Support and Retention Subcommittee.

“It is an honor to be named to the Governor’s DRIVE Task Force and have an opportunity to engage in work that can fundamentally enhance learning for all children in all communities across North Carolina,” Dempsey said. “The task ahead for us is daunting and inspiring, and the Governor has assembled a team that I believe is equal to the challenge and opportunity. Our work can be truly transformative for our state.”

The 32-member task force is comprised of parents, educators, administrators, education advocates, representatives of state and local government, representatives from the University of North Carolina system and North Carolina Community College System and employers with a presence in North Carolina. The Hunt Institute, an affiliate of the Duke University Sanford School of Public Policy, will provide facilitation and research support for the task force. 

The Governor’s Office announced the appointments in a news release on May 6. 

Dempsey has served as dean of UNCW’s Watson College of Education since 2015.

Media Coverage of the Announcement

WNCT, May 6 Governor Cooper announces his DRIVE Task Force to recommend education equity measures