Bethany Removes Robert Byrd Name From Building

June 30, 2020

Bethany College has removed the name of the late senator Robert C. Byrd from its campus health center. A message from Tamara Rodenberg, the president, said the name "created divisiveness and pain for members of Bethany community, both past and present."

"We respect the Byrd family name, but we can no longer let it represent how we lead in today’s world. We will honor our past, but we must propel the college into a new shared future. And so from this point forward, a new chapter begins on our campus, one informed by more diverse voices, one predicated on mutual respect and human value, and one that aims to unite through words, actions and hope," Rodenberg said.

The Byrd name is on campuses throughout West Virginia, owing to his work as a powerful Democratic senator before he died in 2010. Early in his career he was a member of the Ku Klux Klan, but he renounced the organization.

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