The Board of Trustees approved the appointment of Provost Billy E. Frye to the post of chancellor of the University, effective June 1, 1997, at their Sept. 12 meeting. The position of chancellor is provided for in Emory's bylaws, but seldom has been used. According to the bylaws, the chancellor serves as an adviser to the trustees, president and University officers, but does not carry administrative duties.
Frye, 63, cited purely personal reasons for his decision to step down from the position of provost. "In 1986 when I was recruited by [former President] Jim Laney to come to Emory, it was my intention to come and give five years of service," said Frye. "That intention was related to my avocations that I enjoy in the North Georgia mountains--gardening, trout fishing and being an amateur botanist. I've now given more than twice that service. In all, I've been in academic administration for over 20 years and I find myself now more interested in the larger issue of the University's direction."
President Bill Chace emphasized that is exactly the role he hopes Frye will play. "I know of no better university officer in this country," said Chace. "He is a person of deep integrity, intellectual force and moral stamina. He improves every project he directs and every meeting he joins. And he brings humor and an easy grace to his many deliberations. He is proud of his alma mater, and all of us are proud of the way he has made it so much better. One of his achievements is to have moved Emory to be more intentional about itself, what it is and what it wants to become," said Chace. "The process he used to develop Choices and Responsibility and the lucid description of issues facing Emory contained in that document led to its adoption by the trustees last year as Emory's `value platform.' Now it's time to turn that statement of Emory's challenges into a strategic plan of action, and Billy is the one I'm counting on to help make that happen."
Chace said that an acting provost will be appointed for the 1997-98 academic year and that a search for Frye's permanent successor as provost will begin in September 1997 with the expectation that a new provost would be named in the spring of 1998. No decision has been made as to the length of time Frye will serve as chancellor.