Chris Maples, a former educator with strong political ties across the state, has been named executive director for External Affairs at UNC Pembroke.
Most recently, Maples served as the district director for Congressman Dan Bishop. His prior service includes the eastern district director for Congressman Richard Hudson and an educator at Richmond Community College and Richmond and Scotland county schools.
“I am grateful and blessed with this opportunity. I can’t seem to get past the excitement. I’m a two-time graduate of UNCP. I’m from the area, so I understand how important my role is in helping the university continue to grow,” he said.
In his new position, Maples will work with university and System Office leadership to identify the university’s legislative and high budgetary priorities, develop plans for communicating and monitoring these priorities to the state’s legislators and other applicable government representatives and strengthen the relationships with legislators in the region, state and federal government. In addition, he will work onsite to provide any needed support to faculty, staff and students and develop and enhance the university’s community and regional relationships.
A native of Rockingham, Maples is a U.S. veteran, serving in the Navy, the Naval Reserves and National Guard.
Upon returning home, he earned his bachelor’s degree in history and his master’s degree in teaching from UNCP. Throughout his professional career, Maples has served his community through volunteering with the American Red Cross and the Boys Scouts, where he served as scoutmaster for Troop 527 in Hamlet. He also previously served as an active member of the Board of Visitors at UNCP.
Giving back to the community has remained a focal point for Maples and his family. His wife, Toni, is a Richmond County commissioner and has taught 20 years as a public schoolteacher. Maples’ daughter-in-law is also a UNCP graduate and currently teaching in Richmond County.
“I want UNCP to be as prepared to serve the community and the surrounding communities in the best way possible. In order for this part of the state to achieve maximum success, UNCP must be successful. When the university is successful, several counties across the region will benefit from that success,” Maple said.
“I am so thankful to be in a position to help the university continue to grow.”
Maples resides in Rockingham with his wife, Toni, and their son, Alex.