Tar Heel. Wonk. Mama. Traveler. Unaffiliated.

Mebane Rash is the CEO and editor-in-chief of EducationNC and the N.C. Center for Public Policy Research. Mebane attended Irwin Elementary, First Ward Elementary, McClintock Middle, and East Mecklenburg High School in Charlotte. She graduated from the University of Virginia in 1990 and the UNC School of Law in 1993. At the UNC School of Law, she was a member of the North Carolina Law Review. She has been a member of the North Carolina State Bar since 1993, and she is admitted to practice in both the state and federal court systems.

After law school, she worked for Carolina Legal Assistance, a mental disability law project, before joining the nonpartisan N.C. Center for Public Policy Research as the policy analyst from 1994-98 and the director of law and policy from 2006-14. From 1995-99, she was an adjunct professor at the UNC School of Law. She was an attorney for the ACLU-NC from 1998-99.

She is the president of the Board of Trustees of the national Governmental Research Association. In 2018, she was invited to attend the the Aspen Executive Seminar on Leadership, Values, and the Good Society. In 2013, she was one of 60 women from 25 countries invited to spend a week at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government to study Women and Power: Leadership in the New World. She served on the inaugural Z. Smith Reynolds Leadership Council. In 1997, she was selected to be a William C. Friday Fellow for Human Relations, a fellowship for emerging leaders across North Carolina. She has won national awards from the Governmental Research Association for most distinguished research, outstanding policy achievement, and most effective education of the public.

Mebane is a native of North Carolina, currently living in Raleigh and Deep Gap. She says, “We live in a purple state now – 2.6 million of the registered voters are blue Democrats, 2 million are red Republicans, and 2.1 million are unaffiliated. I could see this happening as I grew up because on my block lived Harvey Gantt, and next door to him lived Mel Watt, and two doors down from them lived Sue Myrick with her son Dan Forest. Every day of my life has been spent playing and then working across party lines. Living a bipartisan life, I have learned the importance of finding common ground and that credible research and information can change minds.”

More articles


D & F: How to consider low school letter grades

I have been worrying about the grade my youngest son’s school would receive for weeks. And, on Thursday, February 5,...


iPads, sheep, and solar farms: Students learn about sustainable agriculture and energy

On a Monday in November, middle school students in the Rowan-Salisbury School System received iPads. By Friday, they were out...


Movie: “The Ticket: The Many Faces of School Choice”

This week, January 25-31, is national school choice week. It is a good opportunity to think about school choice as...


The honor in being a public school kid

There is really only one thing you need to know about me. I am a public school kid. I grew...


175th anniversary of public schools in NC

On January 20, 1840, the first state-funded public school opened its doors in the Williamsburg Community located in southeastern Rockingham...


Señor Foust and AVID: Academics, opportunities, and relationships

I have known Henry Foust for a long time, but not as long as he has been teaching. Señor Foust,...


A public school in a jail? Who knew? And why that matters.

It is much easier to identify problems than it is to identify solutions. But retiring Sheriff Chipp Bailey in Mecklenburg...