Governor James B. Hunt, Jr. has devoted much of his life to his vision for education excellence. The son of a public school teacher, Gov. Hunt grew up in rural eastern North Carolina with imprints of his mother’s teaching that every student can learn and that all deserve a high-quality education. It is his vision and imprint that has guided him throughout his life to improve student performances and be nationally renowned as The Education Governor.
After more than 50 years of public service, including a historic fourth term as governor of North Carolina, Gov. Hunt continues to lead the way to rebuild America’s public education system, especially in these economically challenging times. He believes that America’s education system can rise to the top and compete globally if we prepare our children for success in college, career and the 21st century. In order to meet this challenge, education leaders at all levels must understand the issues and have clear and concise information.
To help achieve his mission, The Hunt Institute – or as it was officially branded at that time, The James B. Hunt, Jr. Institute for Educational Leadership and Policy – was established by the University of North Carolina Board of Governors in September 2001 as a nonpartisan center for educational policy and leadership. In 2008, the chancellor invited the Institute to become an affiliated center at UNC Chapel Hill, housed on campus at the Center for School Leadership Development. It was not long before we outgrew that location and relocated to our current office in Durham, North Carolina.
In 2016, the Institute became an independent, nonprofit entity and joined forces with Duke University’s Sanford School of Public Policy to pursue research, educational partnerships and events related to improving education policy.
Under the leadership of Gov. Hunt and Dr. Javaid Siddiqi, The Hunt Institute’s executive director and CEO, the Institute works effortlessly in a nonpartisan way to design strategy, shape policy, and drive educational improvements on the national and state levels. Using our depth and breadth of knowledge, we bring together resources and experts from across the country, inspiring visionary leadership and dialogue, and mobilizing strategic action to serve as a catalyst for transforming public education and securing America’s future through a quality public education for all. The Hunt Institute is the only organization in the nation exclusively dedicated to empowering governors, policymakers, and other educational leaders in the development and implementation of comprehensive strategies for the transformation of public education.
We have the power to change the educational achievement of our children and their future. And we have the ability to meet and overcome these challenges through continued education of others who can lead the vision.” – Governor Jim Hunt