BB&T endows distinguished professorship at UNCP


A gift from BB&T Corporation has established an Endowed Professorship in the Philosophical Foundations of Free Enterprise in the School of Business at The University of North Carolina at Pembroke.


BB&T endowed professorship -- From left: BB&T’s Jeff Etheridge, Chancellor Allen C. Meadors and BB&T’s James Gore.

BB&T, a super regional bank headquartered in Winston-Salem, N.C., with deep roots in Southeastern North Carolina, has contributed $500,000 towards a $1 million endowment that will bring a distinguished scholar and teacher to the University.

An additional gift of $25,000 will purchase books and materials to advance the teaching of the moral and philosophical underpinnings of capitalism.

The endowment carries with it the objective of teaching future generations of business leaders the moral and philosophical principles underlying free markets, said John Allison, BB&T’s chairman and chief executive officer.

“We believe there needs to be a deeper understanding of the morality of capitalism and its causal relationship to economic well-being,” Allison said. “This contribution will encourage business graduates who enter the workplace to have a firm grasp of the moral principles underlying free markets, a better understanding of our economy, and an enhanced ability to make meaningful contributions to the world.”

The gift, which is to be made over five years, will be matched by the North Carolina General Assembly’s Distinguished Professors Endowment Trust Fund. As an endowment, the gift will fund the professorship perpetually.

It is UNCP’s fifth distinguished professorship and third in the School of Business. Distinguished professorships that are funded from outside sources represent an outstanding opportunity for institutions of higher education, said Dr. Eric Dent, dean of the school.

“The School of Business is very excited by the continued support of BB&T,” Dr. Dent said. “This very generous gift will make an enormous difference at UNCP. 

“The establishment of the BB&T Endowed Professorship in the Philosophical Foundations of Free Enterprise will allow us to recruit or retain a ‘superstar’ faculty member in this area,” Dr. Dent continued. “It is also admirable for a large company such as BB&T to want to support the teaching of ethics, and this gift will allow us to expand our offerings in this area. 

“Finally, the portion of the gift that will provide books to students will be greatly appreciated by them,” the business school dean said.

Chancellor Allen C. Meadors thanked the bank and its leadership for investing in higher education.

“This gift to The University of North Carolina at Pembroke is meaningful because of its size and its purpose,” Chancellor Meadors said. “It also speaks to BB&T’s considerable relationship with this University and the communities they serve.

“We greatly appreciate BB&T’s generosity and the leadership of people like James Gore and Jeff Etheridge,” Dr. Meadors said.
Gore, Lumberton city executive and Etheridge, Southeast Region President, were on hand October 2 to discuss the program and gift with UNCP administration.

BB&T is a full-service financial institution built on a strong foundation that emphasizes 10 primary values and the significance of individuals' character. (Visit to learn more about the corporation's philosophy.)

BB&T and its employees are long-time supporters of the School of Business and UNCP. Allison was the Distinguished Business Executive Speaker at UNCP in 2006, discussing the company’s vision and values.

Currently, Winston-Salem-based BB&T Corporation and its subsidiaries offer full-service commercial and retail banking and additional financial services such as insurance, investments, retail brokerage, mortgage, corporate finance, consumer finance, payment services, international banking, leasing and trust.

BB&T operates more than 1,500 financial centers in 11 states and Washington, D.C. With $127.6 billion in assets, BB&T Corporation is the nation's 11th largest financial holding company.

The bank has historic roots in Eastern North Carolina. BB&T was founded in Wilson in 1872.

In 1995, the bank merged with Southern National Corp., a bank founded in Lumberton that was headquartered in Winston-Salem at the time of the merger.

Since the merger, BB&T has grown through strong management and a string of acquisitions including United Carolina Bank of Whiteville. More information about the company is available at
To learn more about this gift or giving at UNCP, please call the Office for Advancement at 910.521.6252 or email