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North Carolina Cabinet

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The North Carolina Cabinet is the group of unelected heads of the executive departments of the Government of North Carolina. It is separate and distinct from the North Carolina Council of State, the members of which are elected statewide, and which makes up the rest of the executive leadership of the government. All cabinet secretaries are appointed by the governor.[1][2][3]


The Cabinet's size decreased by two on Jan. 1, 2012, when three Cabinet-level agencies, the North Carolina Department of Crime Control and Public Safety, the North Carolina Department of Correction and the North Carolina Department of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, were merged to become the North Carolina Department of Public Safety.[4][3]

The Cabinet then expanded by two secretaries in 2015, with the creation of two new Departments: Information Technology and Military and Veterans Affairs.[5]

Current members

The current cabinet includes the following positions:[3]

Position Formed Incumbent
Secretary of Administration 1957 Mark Edwards (acting)[6]
Secretary of Commerce 1971 Machelle Sanders[6]
Secretary of Environmental Quality 2015 Dionne Delli-Gatti[7]
Secretary of Health and Human Services 1971 Mandy Cohen[8]
Secretary/Chief Information Officer, Department of Information Technology 2015 Jim Weaver[9]
Secretary of Military and Veterans Affairs 2015 Walter E. Gaskin [10]
Secretary of Natural and Cultural Resources 1971 D. Reid Wilson[11]
Secretary of Public Safety 1977 Erik Hooks[12]
Secretary of Revenue 1921 Ronald Penny[13]
Secretary of Transportation 1979 Eric Boyette[14]

The Governor also appoints senior staff who are not Cabinet "Secretaries," but hold posts with a similar rank as Cabinet officials:

  • Chief of Staff: Kristi Jones[15]
  • Director of the Office of State Human Resources: Barbara Gibson[16]
  • Budget Director: Charlie Perusse[16]

Advice and consent

Just before Roy Cooper took office as governor in 2017, the North Carolina General Assembly, breaking with longstanding tradition, added a provision to state law that Cabinet appointments require the advice and consent of the North Carolina Senate.[17] Cooper challenged that law in court and said none of his nominees would wait for a Senate confirmation hearing to assume their duties.[18] He announced on Jan. 27, 2017, that all but two cabinet secretaries had been sworn in and had taken office.[19] A three-judge panel issued a temporary restraining order on Feb. 7, 2017, preventing the Senate from taking action to hold confirmation hearings, pending the outcome of the case challenging the constitutionality of the law.[20] The panel later rescinded the order, but Cooper said he would hold off on submitting nominees to the Senate until after the trial could be held.[21] After further court proceedings, the Senate issued a subpoena to Larry Hall to attend his confirmation hearing for Secretary of Military and Veterans Affairs, and Hall complied. The Senate later voted unanimously to confirm Hall.[22] The North Carolina Court of Appeals ruled against the Governor and upheld the constitutionality of the law providing for advice and consent in November 2017.[23]


  1. ^ "Executive Branch". Retrieved September 11, 2019.
  2. ^ Marshall, Ellaine F. (2001). North Carolina Manual. North Carolina Secretary of State.
  3. ^ a b c "Executive Branch of the North Carolina Government". NCPEDIA. Retrieved December 6, 2019.
  4. ^ Winston-Salem Journal
  5. ^ News & Observer
  7. ^ Press release: Governor Cooper Names New Department of Environmental Quality Secretary
  8. ^ WRAL: Cooper adds veteran lawmaker, Medicaid expert to cabinet
  9. ^ Press release: Governor Cooper Appoints Jim Weaver as DIT Secretary
  10. ^ Press release: Governor Names Military and Veterans Affairs Secretary
  11. ^ Governor Cooper Promotes D. Reid Wilson to Department of Natural and Cultural Resources Secretary
  12. ^ Governor's Press Release: Cooper names experienced law enforcer secretary of department of public safety
  13. ^ "Gov Cooper Names Leaders of Revenue and Information Technology".
  14. ^ Cooper Names New Secretaries for Departments of Transportation and Information Technology
  15. ^ "Cooper Makes Staff Picks, Says he will be sworn in Jan 1". ABC11.
  16. ^ a b "Gov Roy Cooper Announces Cabinet Picks". Triangle Business Journal.
  18. ^ Cite error: The named reference business was invoked but never defined (see the help page).
  19. ^ Leaders sworn into Governor Cooper’s Cabinet
  20. ^ Temporary Restraining Order, posted by
  21. ^ WRAL: Court removes block on NC cabinet confirmations
  22. ^ Associated Press: Senate Confirms Cooper's First Cabinet Secretary
  23. ^ Cooper v. Berger

This page was last edited on 18 February 2021, at 15:46
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