Linda Combs

Linda Morrison Combs, 77, died on Thursday, October 19th, 2023, in Winston Salem, North Carolina. She was born on June 29th, 1946, in Lenoir, NC to Vera Ludema Bryant and Robert Hugh Morrison.

She graduated from Hudson High School and earned her Associate of the Arts degree at Gardner-Webb University. She went on to receive her Bachelor of Science and Master’s degree from Appalachian State University then her Doctorate in Educational Administration from Virginia Tech. She holds an honorary Doctorate from Gardner-Webb University.

From 2005-2007 she was Controller of the United States. As Controller, she worked on the widest possible range of issues at the highest levels of government. She routinely briefed the President of the United States on the status of financial management in the Federal departments, and frequently testified before numerous Congressional oversight committees. She was responsible for establishing financial management policies and requirements for the Executive branch of the Federal government, totaling $2.7 trillion in revenue. She had five Presidential Appointments confirmed by the United States Senate and served under three Presidents: Presidents Ronald Reagan, George H. W. Bush, and George W. Bush.

Linda was unanimously confirmed by the General Assembly as North Carolina's State Controller in June 2014.  She was the sixth State Controller and the first woman to hold this independent office.  This confirmation was to fill the office vacated by the previous controller.  On April 27, 2016, Dr. Combs was again confirmed unanimously by the North Carolina General Assembly for a term that ended with her retirement in 2022.

Linda worked well with both sides of the aisle which aided her in many bi-partisan budgetary achievements.  Prior to her work in Federal and State Government, she had a successful career in the W-S Forsyth County School system. In addition to teaching, she was elected in a landslide vote to the Board of Education.

Linda was an accomplished author and served on severl local boards, including the Board of Visitors of the Babcock Graduate School of Management at WFU, Chair of the Board of Directiors of the Appalachian State University Foundation, and a member of the Board of Trustees at Gardner-Webb University.  She was a devoted member of First Baptist Church in W-Salem.

Linda is survived by her husband, David M Combs of 53.5 years.  They had a wonderful relationship and marriage that cultivated many friends, experiences, and a successful private record label.

Linda is also survived by her brother in law, Don Combs, his wife Chris and their son Josh and wife Stacy, and their children Eva, Ella and Oliver Combs, her 1st cousin Peggy Shore, her husband Gary and their son Christopher.

Visitation will be held 5-7pm Tues., Oct. 24 at Salem Funeral Home, Reynolda Chapel 2951 Reynolda Road.  The funeral will be held at 11am Wed., Oct. 25th at First Baptist Church, 501 W. 5th St., W-Salem.  A graveside service will be a Woodlawn Cemetary in Blowing Rock, NC at 2pm.  A future celebration of life servive is being planned and will be held at First Baptist Church.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Combs Celebrate Freedom Scholarship Fund at the WFU School of Business,  Online condolences can be made @


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12/01/23 05:40 PM #1    

David Cotterill

I had the pleasure and honor to work with Linda when she was a manager in Wachvia Services Student Loan servicing business early in her and my career.. She was a delight to work with, so capable, smart and pleasant. I recognized she was destined for greatness and she proved that to all of us as she advanced in her career.

We miss you Linda and feel so blessed to have known you.

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