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Legal, Compliance, Title IX, and Section 504

The Office of University Counsel provides legal advice to the Board of Trustees, the Chancellor, the administration, faculty, and staff on legal matters involving or affecting the institution; advises the University administration on a broad range of initiatives, policy matters, and issues; and serves as a liaison between the University and its related and affiliated entities on legal issues. In addition, the Office of University Counsel includes the Office of Compliance, which supports administration, faculty and staff in our mutual effort to maintain compliance with all rules and regulations applicable to WCU.

The Legal Counsel Office does not represent individual faculty, staff members or students in personal legal matters.

Legal, Compliance, Title IX, and Section 504 Staff

Shea Browning
General Counsel

Ivy Gibson
Associate General Counsel,
Title IX Coordinator,
Section 504 Coordinator,
Chief Compliance Officer

Kelly Tornow
Assistant General Counsel

Deidre Hopkins
University Investigator

Shelly Fulk
Executive Assistant

Legal Counsel Practice Areas

Our service philosophy is to provide excellent legal services that also advance the business objectives of our clients with sound, common-sense solutions.  To maintain efficiency, we have divided the work-flow into primary attorney assignments.  If you have a legal question about an area not listed, please give us a call.

Email all external public records requsts to Shelly Fulk.

  • Behavioral Assessment Team
  • BOT / Governance / Corporate
  • Chancellor's Office
  • Constitutional Law - Free Speech / Public Assemblies / Religion
  • Construction
  • Development & Foundation
  • Emergency Preparedness
  • Ethics Liaison
  • Faculty hearings - Chancellor / BOT / Faculty Grievance Committee/Faculty Hearing Committee/Staff Grievance Panel
  • Millennial Initiative Development
  • Policies / Regulations
  • Real Estate
  • Technology Transfer Licenses / NDAs
  • Title IX Panel
  • Utilities (Energy Resale/Radio/TV)
  • Workers' compensation
  • Athletics (Compliance)
  • Conflicts of Interest
  • Copyright / Patents / Trademark
  • Discrimination/ Harassment / Civil Rights
  • E-discovery / litigation hold / privacy & security / voice-over IP / DSSC / NCITP
  • Employment matters - SHRA, EHRA non-faculty, Faculty
  • Export Controls
  • Faculty hearings - University
  • Health / HIPAA / Counseling
  • Information Technology
  • Insurance / Risk Management
  • Personnel records
  • Sponsored Research
  • Staff Hearings - University
  • Title IX Coordinator(Student / Employees w/Deidre)
  • Athletics
  • Constitutional Law - Free Speech/Public Assemblies/Religion
  • Contracts / Procurement
  • Development & Foundation
  • Faculty Hearings - University
  • Immigration/International Programs
  • Law Enforcement
  • Policies / Regulations
  • Record Retention
  • Staff Hearings - University
  • Student Affairs (non-Title IX)
  • Title IX Panel
  • Umstead Act
  • Contracts/Affiliations/Procurements
  • Litigation
  • Open Meetings
  • Tax-exempt financing
  • Tax-exempt organizations
  • Tax matters
  • Threat Assessment / Campus Violence
  • Transactions
  • Policy 53 - Unlawful Discrimination
  • Student Conduct Investigations
  • Title VII Investigations
  • Title IX Investigations
  • Training and Development
  • Other Investigations as necessary

DISCLAIMER: These web pages were prepared as an informational service to the Western community. They are not intended to be a comprehensive statement of the law. North Carolina and Federal laws change frequently. Office staffing does not allow immediate updating of these web pages to reflect changes in the law. If you have specific questions with regard to any matter contained in these web pages, please contact University Legal Counsel.

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