Mayes named general counsel for CMS
The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Board of Education appointed André F. Mayes general counsel on Nov. 12. Mayes has been deputy general counsel to the Board since 2008 and succeeds current general counsel George E. Battle III, who is leaving CMS to become a vice chancellor at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
“This one was a no-brainer for the Board,” said Mary T. McCray, Board chair. “We made the decision that we didn’t need to do a national search based on the talent we had available to us right here. The decision to ask Ms. Mayes to serve as our general counsel, was unanimous. Ms. Mayes probably has more in-depth knowledge of North Carolina education law than any lawyer in the state. We are delighted that she accepted the position.”
Mayes, a native of Wadesboro, earned her bachelor’s degree in communications from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and her law degree from Wake Forest University School of Law in Winston-Salem. She is a member of the bar in North Carolina, Maryland and Michigan. She is also a member of the American Bar Association, the Council of School Attorneys and the North Carolina Council of School Attorneys.
“The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Board of Education is very fortunate to have André Mayes, its deputy general counsel, stepping into the role of general counsel,” said Allison Schafer, legal counsel and director of policy for the North Carolina School Boards Association. “André is one of the most experienced and well-respected school attorneys in the state of North Carolina. She has provided high-quality legal representation for Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools for over 10 years. It is hard to imagine anyone more qualified or better-suited than André to assume the position of general counsel to the CMS Board.”
Mayes was a senior attorney in the school law practice group at Clark Hill, PLC in Birmingham, Mich. from 2005-2008 before joining CMS in 2008 as deputy general counsel to the Board of Education. Mayes also served as general counsel and director of operations for the Dorchester County Board of Education in Cambridge, Md., from 2003-2005.
“I am honored to be the next general counsel for the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Board of Education,” Mayes said. “George and I have worked together for 10 years and I will miss his leadership. I look forward to building on the strong foundation that we have established. The CMS legal department will continue its work as a team to provide legal advice and counsel to the Board and to meet the legal needs of the district.”
McCray said that in addition to Mayes’ outstanding expertise and deep knowledge of North Carolina education law, the Board was also pleased to have continuity with an in-house appointment.
“Finding the best person for the job doesn’t always require an outside search,” she said. “We knew Ms. Mayes was the best choice and we’re also pleased that we’ll have continuity as well. We are getting the best of all worlds.”
Mayes will begin working on the transition with Battle immediately and will take over as general counsel Jan. 4, 2020.

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