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About Us

UNC Executive Development prepares businesses and leaders to generate insight, inspire action, drive positive change, and achieve exceptional results. We are a trusted, top-ranked, internationally acclaimed executive education partner with a renowned faculty network. Through our unique, tailored approach, we collaborate with organizations to deliver learning solutions that help support growth and sustained transformation.

As a part of UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School, we bring the School’s research, reputation, and noted faculty to help organizations address their business challenges. We conduct over 200 programs per year serving 5,000 executives.

Photo of the Carolina Inn circa 1924.

1953: A New Initiative

In October of 1953, officials at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill launch a new initiative: the “UNC Executive Program.” 25 North Carolina business executives assemble in Chapel Hill for intensive classroom study and discussion. During the program, participants stay at The Carolina Inn, a hotel that was built in 1924 and later donated to the University by John Sprunt Hill (Class of 1889). Photo: The Carolina Inn circa 1924.

The Kenan Center, circa 1986

1986: Growing Pains

After moving the executive education programs to the basement of Carroll Hall in the 1970s, officials move them yet again, this time to two rooms on the fourth floor of the Kenan Center. However, shuttling program guests between these classrooms and The Carolina Inn is becoming increasingly unwieldy for both the university and participants. Photo: The Kenan Center circa 1986.

DuBose Home circa 1988

1988: An Elegant New Home

The DuBose family donates 27 acres of land as well as the Georgian revival DuBose Home to UNC Chapel Hill. Paul J. Rizzo, then dean of UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School, believes the property will make a perfect setting for a new executive education center. Photo: Built in 1931, the DuBose Home is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. It encompasses over 15,800 square feet of space and serves as a dining and social gathering place for the Rizzo Center.

Groundbreaking for the DuBose Home renovation. (Left to right) Warren Baunach, Pete DuBose, Dan Drake, Mac DuBose, Charlie Loudermilk, Paul Rizzo, Michael Hooker, Paul Fulton, Tom Kenan, and Jack Evans.

1994: Restoration and Construction

The Kenan Trust donates nearly $10 million to the executive education center. This donation funds the design and construction of the new executive education campus. This includes restoring the DuBose Home as well as building new accommodations and classroom facilities. Photo: The groundbreaking for the DuBose Home renovation. (Left to right) Warren Baunach, Pete DuBose, Dan Drake, Mac DuBose, Charlie Loudermilk, Paul Rizzo, Michael Hooker, Paul Fulton, Tom Kenan, and Jack Evans.

Loudermilk Hall

1999: The Grand Plan is Realized

Officials dedicate the completed Paul J. Rizzo Center on September 22, 1999. The facility includes three buildings: the restored DuBose Home; McLean Hall (named in honor of UNC alumnus James K. McLean Sr. and his wife, Sarah); and Loudermilk Hall (named in honor of UNC alumnus R. Charles Loudermilk Sr.). Photo: Loudermilk Hall.

Rizzo Center construction, October 2014.

2014: In High Demand

UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School begins expanding the Rizzo Center to accommodate growing demand for its executive education programs. Photo: Construction at the Rizzo Center on October 24, 2014.

The pool and courtyard at the Rizzo Conference Center.

2015: An Enhanced Experience

UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School completes the expansion of the Rizzo Center. The expansion includes two new buildings, 66 guest rooms, a 30,000-square-foot courtyard for large events, two 70-seat classrooms, and a bistro-style restaurant. Photo: The renovated Rizzo Center’s courtyard and pool on July 13, 2016.

UNC Executive Development President Stephen Hyde

2022: A New Direction

In 2022, current UNC Executive Development President Stephen Hyde joins the team. “I have spent my career in executive development, professional development, and lifelong learning,” Stephen says. “It has become a passionate interest. I have seen the impact we have had, for individuals and teams, and at every level of an organization. I have always been interested in learning and human development — in the ways we grow, and change, and adapt over time.” Photo: President Stephen Hyde.

UNC Executive Development staff standing on the lawn of the DuBose home.

Looking to the Future

UNC Executive Development has come a long way since serving its first program to 25 North Carolina business executives in 1953. Today, we have supported learning experiences for tens of thousands of current and future leaders in corporate, government, and nonprofit organizations in more than 20 countries. However, despite expansions, renovations, and other changes during our 70 years of partnerships in the Tar Heel community and beyond, our mission remains the same: to serve by leading others, and to deliver leadership development to both effect organizational change and benefit society.