June 7, 2020

A message from the University of Montevallo

We are aware of discourse on social media expressing concerns over the names of some buildings on the University of Montevallo campus, such as the Wallace Speech and Hearing Center, Bibb Graves Hall and others. Similar discourse is occurring at other universities across the state, as many campuses in Alabama have buildings named for these individuals. We understand and sympathize with these concerns, especially at such an important time in our civil rights history.

As a state-funded public liberal arts university, we wanted to let you know our understanding of the process to change the name of buildings on the UM campus per state law: The University must obtain state permission to change the names of buildings on campus that are more than 20 years old, per the Alabama Memorial Preservation Act of 2017. The process would also involve the Student Government Association, Faculty Senate, Staff Senate and the Board of Trustees. Any recommended change would then be sent to the Committee on Alabama Monument Protection for approval.

State legislation regarding this issue can be found at https://www.camp.alabama.gov/

The UM administration will make this concern one of the primary topics of discussion in the coming weeks as we engage student, faculty, staff, alumni and volunteer board leaders in a plan to ensure UM is doing all it can to support racial justice and equity.