The University of Memphis

Naming and Recognition



POLICIES

Issued: May 11, 2009
Responsible Official: Vice President for Advancement
Responsible Office: Advancement

Policy Statement


Policy StatementThe University may name certain buildings, parts of buildings, colleges, schools, centers, organizational sub-units, roads and plazas in honor of benefactors (individuals, corporations, foundations), or persons who have provided significant service to the University or who have made significant contributions to the field of education, government, science, humanities or social progress.   


Purpose


  To establish procedures on naming University buildings, parts of buildings, colleges, schools, centers, organizational sub-units, roads and plazas in recognition of specific individuals or groups.   


Procedures


A. Approval to Name

 

  1. When naming specific buildings, parts of buildings, colleges, schools, centers, organizational sub-units, roads and plazas after an individual, corporation, group or entity, the Facilities and Services Standing Committee, working with the Office of Advancement, advises and makes recommendations to the President of the University on appropriate names.   
  2. For namings that require TBR approval, the President shall submit a recommendation, along with the committee’s report and any additional supporting information deemed appropriate, to TBR through the Chancellor. 
  3. The President has the authority to make the final decision on naming sub-units or components of buildings and facilities. 
  4. In situations where buildings, parts of buildings, colleges/schools, roads and plazas may be named in recognition of a gift, a final commitment to the potential benefactors regarding the naming should not take place without first seeking the approval of the Facilities and Services Standing Committee.   
  5. If a building name is not forthcoming at the time the building has been completed, and a name is needed for identification purposes, only a generic name should be used, thus reserving the prerogative to bring forward a name that meets the established criteria at a later date.  Examples of such generic names are:  Research West Building, West Hall, and Music Building.
      

B. General Guidelines for Naming
  1. It is recommended that a given surname may be assigned to only one building.
  2. When naming a university building, part of building, college, school, center, organizational sub-unit, road and plaza in honor of a person who has retired from active employment with the university, it is recommended that a minimum of two years pass from the individual’s date of retirement.
  3. If a facility is to be named for a deceased individual, it is recommended that a minimum of two years pass between the date of death and the naming.
  4. University buildings, parts of buildings, colleges, schools, centers, organizational sub-units, roads and plazas shall not be named after anyone convicted of a felony.
  5. When naming buildings, parts of buildings, colleges, schools, centers, organizational sub-units, roads and plazas, the appropriateness of the corporate or family name in a public context should be taken into consideration. 
       

C. Special Considerations
  1. Naming facilities in honor of individuals who have provided significant service:

In general, individuals and groups for whom University facilities are named must have made a significant contribution to the field of education, government, science, the humanities or social progress. Special consideration shall be given to:

    • The historical significance of the contribution of the individual or group to the University;
    • The association of the individual or group with the building, part of building or facility to be named;
    • State, regional, national or international recognition of the individual’s or group’s contributions and achievements, which will remain memorable long beyond the lifetime of those who propose the naming.

It is recommended that University buildings, parts of buildings, colleges, schools, centers, organizational sub-units, roads and plazas not be named in honor of persons who are actively employed, involved in or related to University operations.

     2.  Naming facilities in recognition of private gifts:

    • University buildings, parts of buildings, colleges, schools, centers, organizational sub-units, roads and plazas may be named for benefactors (or persons benefactors are seeking to honor) who make a gift that represents a significant percentage of the cost of the funding needed for new construction or major renovations. The amount will vary with each individual situation.  At the recommendation of the President, existing buildings can be named for a donor in recognition of a significant gift to the University. It is recommended that gift commitments be paid in full within seven years. 
    • Generally, each gift should carry only one naming opportunity to avoid duplicative recognition for the same gift.  For example, rooms or other spaces within buildings will not be named when the donor already has been recognized with the establishment of a named endowment for the same gift.
    • Gifts made through an irrevocable deferred gift technique -- including but not limited to a charitable remainder trust, pooled income fund, charitable gift annuity, deferred pledge agreement (estate note), or a contract to make a will – have special considerations as follows:
      • Such gifts generally will not be accepted for the purpose of naming new University buildings or parts of new buildings for which contributions from private sources are needed for construction costs.
      • Ordinarily, such gifts may be accepted for the purpose of naming existing buildings, or parts of buildings, provided there is no current need of funds for building renovations or expansion and that the face value of the gift is at least 75 percent of the replacement value of the building.
      • No facilities will be named in recognition of revocable deferred gifts.

3.  Circumstances under which a name may be changed or removed: 

    • A name on a facility or other space/entity that was named in recognition of a charitable gift may be removed at the discretion of the President if and when the donor defaults on the gift payment.
    • Generally, the naming of a facility will remain in perpetuity. However, in some cases, the University and the donor may find it appropriate to assign a time limitation on named buildings or parts of buildings, colleges/schools, roads or plazas, with a recommendation to review at the end of a defined period of time. Time limitations on buildings and parts of buildings, roads and plazas, etc. may be at the discretion of the University and the donor.  
    • If an individual for whom a facility is named subsequently is convicted of a felony or otherwise engages in conduct that, in the sole discretion of the University, is injurious to the reputation of the University, the name may be removed, and any gift made in connection with the naming will be retained by the University.
    • In the case of a divorce or other family dissolution, a naming may be changed at the request of the couple or family, at the sole expense of the couple or family, provided the couple or family provides legal documentation of name change and of the concurrence of all affected parties and approval of the President.
    • If the name of a corporation/organization changes after a facility is named for the corporation/organization, the name of the facility would remain the same unless a change is requested by the corporation/organization and/or recommended by the Facilities and Services Standing Committee in accordance with this policy. If such a request is made, the name will be changed as long as the corporation/organization pays the complete expense of making the change.  
    • Should a building be demolished or replaced and the former name is no longer warranted, the Facilities and Services Standing Committee, along with the Office of Advancement, will consider new naming opportunities. When possible, the Office of Advancement will contact a family member and/or the appropriate contact person for the former namesake to inform them of the demolition or replacement of the current building. It may be appropriate to place a plaque in, or on, a new building to indicate that it occupies the site of a building formerly known by another name.

 

     


Links


Links

TBR Policy 4:02:05:01: Naming Buildings        http://www.tbr.edu/policies/default.aspx?id=1040
and Facilities and Building Plaques      

U of M Policy 1368: Identification of                 http://policies/UM1368.htm
Buildings and Facilities

         

  


Revision Dates


 
UM1708 - Issued: May 11, 2009


Subject Areas:

AcademicFinanceGeneralHuman ResourcesInformation TechnologyStudent Affairs
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