Walter Dalton joins GWU staff for semester

Teaching southern politics
Jan. 09, 2013 @ 07:05 AM

FOREST CITY — Former North Carolina Lt. Governor Walter Dalton taught his first class in Southern Politics at Gardner-Webb University Monday night.

"This is something new, but is something I'm going to enjoy," Dalton said of his new assignments. "I'm teaching Southern Politics and US Government, subjects I'm very familiar."

Dalton has joined the university in a full time role serving as assistant to the president and distinguished visiting professor of political science. Dalton will teach courses and serve as special counsel to GWU President Dr. Frank Bonner.

As part of his new responsibilities, Dalton will also conduct speaking engagements for a variety of groups and classes on campus; assist in setting up student internships in state or federal government agencies and businesses; represent the University in a wide range of areas related to University Advancement; and provide legal counsel to the University as needed.

“Having the former lieutenant governor on staff gives the University new insight into politics and government administration, along with his history of public service experience,” said GWU Provost and Senior Vice President Dr. Ben Leslie. “We’re proud and honored.”

Dalton is a native of Rutherford County, and was a state senator for 12 years before being elected lieutenant governor in 2008 under former Governor Beverly Perdue. Dalton, a democrat, ran for governor in 2012 before losing a hard-fought campaign to Republican Pat McCrory. Dalton represented constituents in Cleveland and Rutherford counties for more than a decade in the North Carolina General Assembly. Dalton’s legislative career started in 1996 when he won the senate race. In the state senate, Dalton served as co-chair of the Senate Education Committee and the Senate Appropriations Committee. One of his top priorities in office was education. In 2003, he sponsored the Innovative Education Initiatives Act, establishing North Carolina’s award-winning network of early college high schools. This system of high schools partnered with institutions of higher education allowed students to graduate with both a high school diploma and either an associate’s degree or college credit in five years. Dalton also supported increasing funding for the state’s public university and community college systems during his tenure.