Former Governor Jim Holshouser dies at age 78 - | WBTV Charlotte

Former Governor Jim Holshouser dies at age 78

Source: UNC-TV Source: UNC-TV


PINEHURST, N.C. (AP) - Former North Carolina Gov. Jim Holshouser has died. He was 78.
Holshouser's family said he died Monday morning at a hospital in Pinehurst after a period of declining health.

A native of Boone, Holshouser was the first Republican elected governor in the state in the 20th century when he won during President Richard Nixon's landslide victory in 1972. He was also the youngest governor in state history.

Holshouser created a University of North Carolina Board of Governors to oversee the state's newly consolidated system of public universities and established health clinics in rural areas. He expanded public school kindergartens and added to the state parks system.

After leaving office in 1977, Holshouser moved to Southern Pines and returned to practicing law. He also served 16 years on the UNC-system board.

Several North Carolina political leaders have released statements remembering Holshouser and his contributions to the state:

“James Holshouser was more than a friend and mentor, he was a genuine leader. His passing is not only a loss for the state of North Carolina, but for the countless number of people who were personally touched by his guidance and kindness. Ann and I will have the Holshouser family in our prayers. His counsel was invaluable. Compassion was the foundation of Governor Holshouser’s life. He was a champion of education. He made health care available in counties that didn’t have doctors.  And he provided historic professional opportunities to women and minorities. North Carolina is a better place because of his leadership and heart.” -Gov. Pat McCrory

“I was terribly sad to hear of Gov. Jim Holshouser’s passing.  Gov. Holshouser was one of the kindest and most sincere people to ever become involved in North Carolina politics.  Staying true to his mountain roots, Jim would always shoot you straight and stay true to his word.  His lifelong dedication to service to our state was defined by many outstanding accomplishments that made North Carolina a better place to live.  To those of us who knew him personally, Jim was a trusted counselor, leader, and, most importantly, a great friend.  Today, all North Carolinians have lost one of the true statesmen of our time.” -Sen. Richard Burr


“I am sad to learn that former Governor Jim Holshouser has died. Jim was such a good man, and I’ve long admired his ability to work with Democrats and Republicans. His moderate, consensus-building approach made him an effective leader who brought health clinics to underserved areas, bolstered our public education system and backed important legislation to protect our environment. Jim served during a time of great change in our nation. As our state and our country worked to fulfill our ideals as a land of opportunity for all, he appointed African-Americans to key positions and named the first woman to a cabinet-level position. Jim leaves behind many contributions to North Carolina, and my thoughts and prayers are with Jim’s family during this difficult time.” -Sen. Kay Hagan

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