Joab Langston Thomas, who grew up in a small town in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains, found his life’s purpose in higher education, earning three degrees at Harvard and ultimately leading three of the country’s top public research universities. Thomas, NC State’s ninth chancellor, died Monday in Tuscaloosa, Ala. He was 81.
“Joab Thomas left an indelible mark on the university,” said Chancellor Randy Woodson. “His steady leadership, for example, led to the creation of NC State’s College of Veterinary Medicine, which has grown into one of the top such schools in the nation. From a family of educators, he dedicated his life to teaching and learning, and everyone he knew and mentored was richer for the experience.” READ MORE