North Carolina Chamber Award Recipients

Each year at the North Carolina Chamber’s Annual Meeting, the organization bestows the Award for Distinguished Citizenship and the Award for Distinguished Public Service to individuals who have made significant contributions to North Carolina’s economy and to the life of the state. Below are lists of past recipients of these awards.

Award for Distinguished

Award for Distinguished
Public Service

2017 Thomas E. Skains
Former CEO Piedmont Natural Gas
Richard Y. Stevens
Former N.C. Senator
2016 Susan Cameron
President and CEO
Reynolds American Inc.
Thomas W. Ross
Former President of the University of NC System
Scott Ralls
Former President of the NC Community College System
2015 Stan Kelly
Retired Wells Fargo Executive
President and CEO Piedmont Triad Partnership
The Honorable Sarah Parker
Former Chief Justice N.C. Supreme Court
2014 O. Temple Sloan Jr.
Founder and Chair, CARQUEST/
General Parts International
Then Honorable Jim Crawford
Former N.C. House Representative
2013 The Honorable Wendell H. Murphy
Previous Chairman and CEO, Murphy Farms
The Honorable David Hoyle
Former Secretary of Revenue
2012 James Maynard
Chairman and CEO
Investors Management Company
Chairman, Golden Corral Corporation
Howard Coble
NC-6th U.S. Congress
2011 Stephen P. Zelnak, Jr.
Chairman and Former CEO Martin Marietta Materials
Erskine B. Bowles
Co-Chairman National Commission on Fiscal
Responsibility & Reform
2010 Robert A. Ingram
General Partner, Hatteras Venture Partners
The Honorable Howard N. Lee
Executive Director,
The North Carolina Education Cabinet
2009 John A. Allison, IV
Chairman and former CEO of BB&T
Michael F. Easley
Governor  North Carolina
2008 James B. Hyler Jr.
Former vice chaiman and COO of First Citizens Bank
H. Martin Lancaster
President of the North Carolina
Community College System
2007 Thomas W. Bradshaw
Managing Director and Co-Head of the
Transportation Group for Citigroup Global Markets, Inc.
Justice I. Beverly Lake, Jr.
Former chief justice,
N.C. Supreme Court
2006 Smedes York
President, York Properties
Henry Frye
Former chief justice of the N.C.
Supreme Court
2005 Edward Smith Jr.
Chairman and CEO, Grady-White Boats Inc.
Gen. Henry H. Shelton
Vice chair, board of advisors,
M.I.C. Industries
2004 Bert Collins
Chairman and CEO, N.C. Mutual Life Insurance Co.
Burley Mitchell Jr.
Former chief justice of the
N.C. Supreme Court
2003 John F. McNair III
Retired president of Wachovia Bank
The Rev. Billy Graham
Billy Graham Evangelistic Association
2002 Russell J. Robinson II
Founding partner in Russell, Bradshaw & Hinson
James G. Goodmon
CEO of Capitol Broadcasting Co.
2001 Paul J. Rizzo
Former dean of the Kenan Flagler Business School
Sen. Jesse Helms
Veteran member of the U.S. Senate
2000 Hugh L. McColl Jr.
Chairman and CEO, Bank of America
James B. Hunt Jr.
Governor, State of North Carolina
1999 Louie Woodbury Jr.
President, Woodbury & Co.
Elizabeth Aycock
Secretary, Research Triangle Park
1998 John Medlin, Chairman
Dr. Dallas Herring
Former Chairman, State Board of Education
1997 Sherwood H. Smith Jr.
Chairman, CP&L
C. D. Spangler
Former President UNC System
1996 John A. Forlines Jr.
Chairman & CEO, Bank of Granite
Hugh McRae Morton
President & Owner, Grandfather Mountain
1995 William S. Lee
Former NCCBI Chairman
James E. Holshouser Jr.
Former Governor
1994 C. Felix Harvey
Former NCCBI Chairman
Dr. Jay M. Robinson
1993 W. Roger Soles
Former NCCBI Chairman
James G. Martin
Former Governor
1992 Ralph W. Ketner
Chairman Emeritus, Food Lion
C. C. Cameron
Former NCCBI Chairman
State Budget Director
1991 Thomas J. Hackney Jr.
Former NCCBI Chairman
L. Richardson Preyer
Former Congressman
1990 W. David Stedman
Chairman, W. David Stedman Associates
Ivie L. Clayton
Former NCCBI President
1989 George R. Herbert
President, Research Triangle Institute
Kenneth C. Royall Jr.
Member, North Carolina Senate
1988 John M. Belk
Chairman of the Board, Belk Stores Services Inc.
Robert W. Scott
President, North Carolina
Department of Community Colleges
1987 Bland W. Worley
Retired Chairman of the Board,
Barclays American Corporation
Harlan E. Boyles
Treasurer State of North Carolina
1986 Frank H. Kenan
Chairman, William R. Kenan Jr. Fund
Joseph Branch
Chief Justice of the
North Carolina Supreme Court
1985 C. C. Cameron
Chairman of Executive Committee,
First Union Corporation
James T. Broyhill
Member of U.S. House of Representatives,
Tenth District of North Carolina
1984 Thomas H. Davis
Chairman of the Board, Piedmont Airlines
Mary D.B.T. Semans
Chairman, The Duke Endowment
1983 Carl Horn Jr.
Former Chairman of the Board,
Duke Power Company
Thad Eure
Secretary of State
1982 J. Paul Sticht
Chairman of the Board & CEO,
R.J. Reynolds Industries Inc.
Dr. Juanita Kreps
Former U.S Secretary of Commerce
1981 Edwin A. Morris
Former Chairman of the Board, Blue Bell Inc.
Henry L. Bridges
Former State Auditor
1980 Shearon Harris
Chairman of the Board,
Carolina Power & Light Co.
Susie Sharp
Former Chief Justice
North Carolina Supreme Court
1979 Joseph M. Bryan
Insurance and Radio-Television Executive,
Jefferson-Pilot Corporation
Terry Sanford
President, Duke University
1978 John F. Watlington Jr.
Retired Chairman & CEO, The Wachovia Corporation
and Wachovia Bank & Trust Company
Albert Coates
Professor Emeritus in the UNC Law School,
Founder, Institute of Government
1977 Holt McPherson
Editor Emeritus, The High Point Enterprise
James A. Graham
North Carolina Commissioner of Agriculture
1976 Allen H. Sims
Former Chairman of the Board,
Citizens National Bank
William H. Bobbitt
Former Chief Justice
North Carolina Supreme Court
1975 Raymond A. Bryan
Chairman of the Board,
T. A. Loving Company
Sam J. Ervin Jr.
Former United States Senator
1974 Addison H. Reese
Chairman of the Board,
North Carolina National Bank
William C. Friday
President University of North Carolina
1973 Alex. H. Galloway
Chairman of the Board,
R. J. Reynolds Industries Inc.
Henry E. Kendall
Former Chairman, Employment Security
Commission of North Carolina
1972 Archie K. Davis
Chairman of the Board,
Wachovia Bank & Trust Company, N.A
Charles R. Jonas
Member of US House of Representatives
Ninth District of North Carolina
1971 J. E. Broyhill
Chairman of the Board, Broyhill Industries
L. H. Fountain
Member of U.S. House of Representatives
Second District of North Carolina
1970 Howard Holderness
Chairman of the Board, Jefferson-Pilot Corporation
Edwin M. Gill
Treasurer, State of North Carolina
1969 R. O. Huffman
Chairman of the Board, Drexel Enterprises
Daniel Killian Moore
Former Governor of North Carolina
1968 Lloyd E. Griffin
Former Executive VP/ Secretary,
North Carolina Citizens Association
1967 Edwin Pate
President, Z.V. Pate Inc.
1966 Emery Byrd Denny
Chief Justice, North Carolina Supreme Court
1965 B. Everett Jordan
United States Senator
1964 R. Grady Rankin
President, Superior Yarn Mills
1963 Sam J. Ervin Jr.
United States Senator