- Associated Press - Thursday, July 21, 2016

ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) - A Detroit-area lawyer and his wife are withdrawing a $3 million gift for a new multicultural center at the University of Michigan because the building would no longer carry the name of a black man.

Mark Bernstein, a member of the university’s governing board, said he and Rachel Bendit didn’t want to silence the “one, lonely African-American voice on our campus.”

“This was, of course, not our intention, but it could have been the result,” Bernstein said Thursday.

The current multicultural center is named for William Monroe Trotter, a civil rights activist in Boston in the early 1900s. Known as the Trotter House, it’s the only campus building named for an African-American.

The university had planned to keep Trotter’s name on the multicultural center but put the center in a new building named for Bernstein and Bendit. President Mark Schlissel said that led to criticism from students and staff.

“What we saw as a gift, others thought of as a loss,” Bernstein said.

The project, a $10 million building in the center of campus, will continue, university spokesman Rick Fitzgerald said.

It was among the demands made by student protesters in 2014, the Detroit Free Press reported.

LOAD COMMENTS ()

 

Click to Read More

Click to Hide