A University of Texas at Austin student dormitory named after a man prominent in the Ku Klux Klan in the 1800s may soon have its name changed, university officials said.
University President William Powers Jr. will ask the university system’s board of regents to rename Simkins Residence Hall, following a recommendation by a 21-member advisory group, according to a press release from the university.
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Gregory Vincent, the university’s vice president of diversity and community engagement, told CNN affiliate KXAN that naming a public building after a self-proclaimed racist compromised the university’s image.
“We’re certainly not erasing Professor Simkins from the annals of UT history,” said Vincent. “All we are saying is that honorific is a very special designation and it should not harm the university’s reputation.”
If approved by board members, the building will be renamed Creekside Dormitory, for a creek that runs nearby, university officials said.