Harrison is the chair of the State Board of Education and the former superintendent of Cumberland County Schools.
In addition to his duties with "Race to the Top," he will chair the newly formed Governor's Education Transformation Commission. The commission, which includes some of the state's top leaders in education and business, will provide guidance as the state pursues the Career and College - Ready, Set, Go! Initiative.
"Both Dr. Harrison and the commission will play an integral role in achieving the goal I have set for all schools in NC: That every child must graduate high school with what it really takes to succeed in a career, in college or in technical training," Perdue said. "That's the mission of the Ready, Set, Go! program."
Harrison's title will be governor's advisor for education transformation. He will receive a salary of $90,000 to be paid by federal grants. Harrison will continue to serve as chair of the SBOE.
In August, the U.S. Education Department announced that N.C. was one of four states to receive money from the "Race to the Top" school reform grant competition.
The aim of the program is to reward ambitious changes to improve schools and close the achievement gap.