Naming Committee to host forums throughout week

John Wills, Staff Reporter

The Eastern community will have an opportunity to share their opinion on the controversy surrounding the Douglas Hall name at upcoming forums hosted by the University Naming Committee.

The Naming Committee is hosting these public forums to gather the thoughts of students, staff and faculty as they try to decide what recommendation to give to President Glassman later next month: to rename Douglas Hall, or to allow the name to remain in place.

The idea of renaming the hall has been visited 3 times in total, once now, once in 2010 and again in 2017. The first two times, the Naming Committee recommended to the President that the Douglas Hall name remain in place. President Glassman asked the committee to revisit the issue in light of the 2020 resurgence Black Lives Matter movement, following the deaths of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor, among others. The final decision on the matter is expected before the end of April.

The committee is intended to include individuals from every core group in the campus community, so as to account for all voices on campus equally. Representatives on the committee serve from positions including Faculty, Staff and Student Senates, as well as CAA and the Council of Chairs.

Ken Wetstein is the ex-oficio convener of the committee. He’s responsible for the upkeep and logistics behind keeping the committee running and in order.

“The committee is constructed intentionally to bring the perspectives of various on-campus constituencies into play,” Wetstein said. “that’s meant to bring a diversity of opinions and perspectives, and part of the role of those individuals, as I expect, is to make sure that they’re touching base with the constituency that they represent.”

There will be multiple forums throughout the coming week to allow members of different communities surrounding the Douglas Hall name to speak their mind. This ensures that each group of people is equally represented in the ongoing debate. One forum, for Eastern staff, took place March 18th. 

A forum for Eastern faculty will be held March 23rd at 3p.m. Interested parties can contact Don Holly at [email protected] for log-in information.

An open forum for all Eastern students will be held March 23rd at 7 p.m. (Zoom Meeting ID: 919 6783 6019, Passcode: EIU1895) 

An open forum for members of the Charleston community will be held March 25th at 7 p.m. (Zoom Meeting ID: 943 8017 6654, Passcode: EIU1895)

A forum for Eastern students affiliated with the Black Student Union, the Latin American Student Organization, Alpha Psi Lambda, the National Pan-Hellenic Council and Eastern’s chapter of the NAACP will be held March 29th at 4 p.m. Interested parties can contact Mona Davenport at [email protected] for log-in information.

A forum for Eastern students affiliated with Eastern’s Student Government, the Interfraternity Council and PanHellenic Council will be held March 30th at 4 p.m. Interested parties can contact Mona Davenport at [email protected] for log-in information. 

A forum for Eastern Students affiliated with Eastern’s Residence Hall Association will be held April 1st at 5 p.m. Interested parties can contact Ken Wetstein at [email protected] for log-in information.

All forums will be facilitated by members of the Naming Committee.


John Wills can be reached at 581-2812 or at [email protected]