North Carolina Commissioner of Labor

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North Carolina Commissioner of Labor
General information
Office Type:  Partisan
Office website:  Official Link
2013 FY Budget:  $31,729,309
Term limits:  None
Length of term:   4 years
Authority:  North Carolina Constitution, Article III, Section 7
Selection Method:  Elected
Current Officeholder

Cherie Berry.jpg
Name:  Cherie K. Berry
Officeholder Party:  Republican
Assumed office:  January 6, 2001
Compensation:  $123,198
Next election:  November 8, 2016
Last election:  November 6, 2012
Other North Carolina Executive Offices
GovernorLieutenant GovernorSecretary of StateAttorney GeneralTreasurerAuditorSuperintendent of EducationAgriculture CommissionerInsurance CommissionerNatural Resources CommissionerLabor CommissionerPublic Service Commission
The North Carolina Commissioner of Labor is an elected state executive position in the North Carolina state government.

The Commissioner of Labor is the head of the North Carolina Department of Labor, and is a member of the Council of State. The Commissioner has broad powers over the department, which promotes the "health, safety and general well-being" of the workers of the state.[1]

Current officeholder

The current officeholder is Cherie Killian Berry (R). Berry has served in the position since January 2001 and was most recently re-elected in 2012. She is the state's first female labor commissioner.


The position and duties of Commissioner of Labor are established by Article III, Section 7 of the North Carolina Constitution.

Article III, Section 7:

A Secretary of State, an Auditor, a Treasurer, a Superintendent of Public Instruction, an Attorney General, a Commissioner of Agriculture, a Commissioner of Labor, and a Commissioner of Insurance shall be elected by the qualified voters of the State...


Article VI, Section 6 of the North Carolina Constitution establishes the qualifications of the office:

Every qualified voter in North Carolina who is 21 years of age, except as in this Constitution disqualified, shall be eligible for election by the people to office.
  • Qualified North Carolina voter
  • 21 years of age


Details of vacancy appointments are addressed under Article III, Section 7.

If a vacancy occurs in the office, the Governor appoints another to serve until a successor is elected and qualified. Every such vacancy shall be filled by election at the first election for members of the General Assembly that occurs more than 60 days after the vacancy has taken place, and the person chosen shall hold the office for the remainder of the unexpired term fixed in this Section.


The Commissioner of Labor heads the Department of Labor, whose main duty is promoting the "health, safety and general welfare" of the workers on North Carolina. The Commissioner has broad regulatory and enforcement powers in order to carry out the duties of the department, and also serves on the Council of State.

The mission statement is as follows:[2]

To foster a safe, healthy, fair and productive North Carolina by:

  • Providing responsive, effective and efficient services
  • Providing and encouraging quality education and training
  • Administering consistently and fairly our regulatory mandates
  • Enhancing public confidence in the Department of Labor


North Carolina elects Labor Commissioners in Presidential election years. For North Carolina, 2008, 2012, 2016, and 2020 are all labor commissioner election years. They are elected to a four-year term, which begins the first day of January following the election.

Full History


The Department of Labor is under control of the Commissioner of Labor. The Department has 3 main divisions - Administration, Occupational Safety and Health, and Standards and Inspections.

Administration Division

The Administration Division includes:
  • The Communication Division, which provides information to the media and public.
  • The Individual Development Accounts Program, which provides assistance to low-income individuals.
  • The Legal Affairs Division
  • The NC Department of Labor Library
  • Research and Policy Division

Occupational Safety and Health Division

The Occupational Safety and Health Division administers the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1973. It also includes:
  • The Agricultural Safety and Health Bureau
  • The East and West Compliance bureaus
  • Consultative Services Bureau
  • Education, Training and Technical Assistance Bureau
  • Planning, Statistics and Information Management Bureau

Standards and Inspections Division

The Standards and Inspections Division includes:
  • Apprentice and Training Bureau
  • Boiler Safety Bureau
  • Elevator and Amusement Device
  • Employment Discrimination Bureau
  • Mine and Quarry Bureau
  • Wage and Hour Bureau

State budget

The budget for the Department of Labor in Fiscal Year 2013 was $31,729,309.[3]


See also: Compensation of state executive officers

Article III, Section 9 defines the method by which the Labor Commissioner's compensation is set:

The officers whose offices are established by this Article shall at stated periods receive the compensation and allowances prescribed by law, which shall not be diminished during the time for which they have been chosen.


In 2012, the commissioner was paid an estimated $123,198. This figure comes from the Council of State Governments.


In 2010, the North Carolina Commissioner of Labor was paid an estimated $123,198 according to the Council of State Governments.[4]

Historical officeholders

Since the creation of the office in 1887, North Carolina has had 17 labor commissioners.

Click "show" for former officeholders.

Recent news

This section displays the most recent stories in a google news search for the term "North Carolina" + Commissioner + of + Labor

All stories may not be relevant to this page due to the nature of the search engine.

"North+Carolina"+Commissioner+of+Labor&um=1&ie=UTF-8&output=rss North Carolina Commissioner of Labor News Feed

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Contact information

1101 Mail Service Center
Raleigh, N.C. 27699-1101
(919) 733-7166 or 800-NC-LABOR (625-2267)

See also

External links

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