GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) — East Carolina University’s interim chancellor announced on social media Monday that he will be retiring at the end of June 2021.

Ron Mitchelson has been chancellor for just over a year. He was appointed as interim chancellor at ECU by UNC System President Bill Roper, on Oct. 31, 2019. He had been serving as acting chancellor since Sept. 30, 2019, shortly after Dan Gerlach submitted his resignation after photos surfaced of him with students at a bar.

Mitchelson also posted a letter that was shared by ECU News Services. In it, he wrote:

“Serving East Carolina University as interim chancellor is a humbling experience. A pandemic was not in the picture when I accepted the position more than a year ago, and I am grateful for the help and support I have received from Pirate Nation during these difficult months.

“After 42 years in higher education, I plan to retire at the end of June. After the naming of our new chancellor I will help with the transition, teach another intro to geography class this spring, and move into retirement.

“The mission of ECU to serve this region is what brought me here more than 20 years ago and I could have never dreamed that I would finish my career leading this great university. It is an opportunity experienced by few people. I am grateful and appreciative for the chance to serve.

“During my tenure at ECU, I’ve been a professor and department chair then provost before becoming the interim chancellor. I worked alongside and taught very talented and brilliant people through the years which made me a better teacher and leader.

“The support of my family has been crucial to my success, so I am very happy to devote more time to my wife, children and grandchildren.

“As we move forward, remember to be good to one another.

“No matter where the future takes me, I will always be a Pirate!”

Mitchelson, who came to ECU in 1999 as a professor and chair of the Department of Geography, has served as provost since 2015. Before coming to Greenville, he held faculty and administrative positions at the University of Georgia and at Morehead State University in Kentucky.