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Paul Hardin III


1931 - 2017 Obituary Condolences
Paul Hardin III Obituary
Paul Hardin III

June 11, 1931 - July 1, 2017

Chapel Hill

Paul Hardin III, former Chancellor of the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, died on July 1 after a courageous battle with ALS. He is survived by his wife of 63 years, Barbara Russell Hardin, his three children and their spouses, Paul Russell Hardin (Melanie), Sandra Hardin Mikush (Don), and Dorothy Hardin Holmes (Bill). He is also survived by nine grandchildren—Paul Russell Hardin Jr., Noel Hardy Hardin, Elizabeth Coleman Hardin, David Russell Mikush (Cambey), Katherine Mikush Fogleman (Nick), James Paul Mikush, William Perry Holmes Jr., Andrew Hardin Holmes, and Paul Russell Holmes—one great grandchild, Lila Stone Fogleman, his sister Betsy Hardin Utley Hoak and his brother Edward Reel Hardin (Susan).

Paul Hardin III was born to Paul Hardin Jr. and Dorothy Reel Hardin in Charlotte, NC on June 11, 1931, and grew up in Concord, Waynesville, Wadesboro, Asheboro, Shelby and High Point, North Carolina. He earned both his bachelors and law degrees from Duke University, where he was inducted into Phi Beta Kappa, finished first in his law school class, served as editor-in-chief of the Duke Law Journal, played on the golf team, and fell in love with Barbara Stone Russell. They were married the day after graduation in 1954.

After service in the US Army Counter Intelligence Corps, Paul practiced law in Birmingham with the firm of Bradley, Arant, Rose & White. He returned to Duke Law School where he served on the faculty for ten years before becoming President of Wofford College at the age of 37. He went on to serve as President of both Southern Methodist University and Drew University before becoming the seventh Chancellor of UNC-Chapel Hill in 1988. After retirement in 1995, he served on the faculty of the UNC School of Law.

A national leader in higher education, Paul earned a reputation for energetic and bold leadership, formidable fundraising skills, integrity, an open and engaging personality, and a relentlessly positive spirit. He was awarded numerous honorary degrees, served on several corporate boards, was an active lay leader in the United Methodist Church and held numerous community leadership roles. An avid golfer, he competed as an amateur in the 1962 British Open, recorded six career holes in one and shot his age on numerous occasions. Above all, he was devoted to his wife and family.

A memorial service is scheduled for Saturday, July 8 at 3:00 pm at University United Methodist Church in Chapel Hill. In lieu of flowers, memorial gifts may be made to the Duke ALS Clinic, the Gillikin/Hardin Endowment at the UNC Library, the Paul Hardin Scholarship Fund at Duke Law School or the Hardin-Russell Endowment Fund at Lake Junaluska Assembly.
Published in The News & Observer on July 2, 2017
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