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6.1.37 Naming of University Facilities and Entities 

I. Definition of Terms

The terms "facility" and "facilities" refer to any university building, structure, room, plaza, open space, landscaped area, or other physical improvements or natural features of the University campus or other property under the administrative control of the University.

"Donor" refers to an individual, corporation, or foundation who have made significant financial contributions to the University for the development of a new program, position, or renovated or new facility or facilities.

University "entity" refers to any college, department/school, or any programs within such entities. The terms “center” and “institute” refer to any entity so designated through university processes. The term "position" refers to any “endowed chair” and “endowed professorship” or any position established  through financial contributions to the University by donors and approved/created  through university processes.

Naming possibilities for university facilities or entities include any person or legal entity referred to in this policy statement as an "individual" or "individuals". 

II. Authority for Naming Campus Facilities

Authority for naming campus facilities is conferred upon the University by the Board of Trustees of Illinois State University Governing Document (Section C.4.3) as follows: 

"The Board shall approve the naming of all facilities of the University.  The University shall develop rules to be used in recommending names to the Board."

Naming of university entities will follow the policy and procedures outlined below, with the exception that they receive final approval from the President and may be submitted to the Board of Trustees for their information. 

The Illinois State University Foundation acts as the official fundraising arm of Illinois State University. Gift-based naming proposals for eligible university facilities and entities require the prior approval of the Vice President for University Advancement and the Vice President responsible for programs and activities housed in the facility or entity or the Director of Athletics when it is an athletic facility or entity before being forwarded to the University Naming Committee.

III. University Naming Committee 

The University Naming Committee advises the President prior to decision making with regard to the naming of entities and making recommendations to the Board of Trustees regarding the naming of facilities.  The committee is comprised of the following: 

  • Vice President for University Advancement or VPUA's designee (co-chair)
  • Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost or Provost's designee (co-chair)
  • Vice President for Finance and Planning or VPFP's designee from the facilities area
  • Vice President for Student Affairs or VPSA's designee
  • University General Counsel 
  • Director of Athletics or Director's designee 
  • Assistant to the President 
  • Assistant to the President for Diversity and Inclusion 
  • One faculty representative appointed by the President
  • One student representative appointed by the President 

The student member shall serve a one-year term beginning in August. The faculty representative serves a two-year term, and may be reappointed for a maximum of three consecutive terms. The faculty member is eligible to be reappointed for service after one year off the committee. 

IV. Policies

A. Functional Names

In most cases, university facilities or entities will be given functional names that describe and identify the principal activity or purpose of the facility or entity.

B. General Names

University facilities or entities may be given general names if, because of frequently changing or multiple functions, a functional name could be misleading, cumbersome, or inappropriate.

C. Naming in Honor of Individuals, Corporations, or Other Entities 

University facilities or entities may be named for donors who have made significant financial contributions to the University; notable alumni with close ties to the University; former employees of the University; distinguished former members of the Board of Trustees; and public persons of Illinois, nation or any country. 

Any individual(s) or corporate entities for whom a facility or entity may be named should be representative of the University's core values. 

Donors who wish to pursue a gift-based naming opportunity for any eligible University facility or entity must meet the Illinois State University Foundation Guidelines for Naming Opportunities and Endowments and any other applicable policies and have a fully executed donor gift agreement on file with Illinois State University Foundation. 

In exceptional instances, a University facility or entity may be named to honor an individual whose accomplishments or contributions have distinguished the University.  No facility or entity will be named after or dedicated in honor of any person employed by the University, the State of Illinois, or who is an elected office holder until five years after termination of service. 

D. Renaming, Removal, or Relocation of Facility or Entity Names 

The renaming, removal or relocation of a dedication of a facility or entity shall follow the same university policy and procedures for naming a new facility or entity. 

Names of Facilities or Entities may be removed or changed in unusual circumstances when it appears a prior naming could be damaging to the reputation of the University or not be in the best interest of the University. The University Naming Committee shall follow the same procedure as for naming a facility or entity.

E. Ineligible Facilities or Entities

The University Naming Committee will determine facilities or entities that will not be eligible for naming for an individual. At present, such facilities include the Quad. Facilities named for historic Illinois State University persons will not be renamed without prior Senate authorization.

V. Procedures

A. Confidentiality

Considering the sensitivity of the matters under consideration and their potential for creating misunderstanding, all stages of the proposal, review and recommendation process are required to be conducted in confidence.

B. Facilities or Entities with Functional/General Names

Any member of the university community may submit a written proposal for the assignment of or change in a functional/general name, with an explanation of supporting reasons, to the Vice President responsible for programs and activities housed in the facility or entity or Director of Athletics when it is an athletic facility or entity by any member of the University community.  Recommendation for the naming of a facility or entity is initiated upon receipt by the University Naming Committee of the proposal from the appropriate Vice President or the Director of Athletics.

The Committee, to the extent it deems necessary and appropriate, should solicit views of members of the campus community. 

In the naming of academic entities, the Committee shall request a written report on the proposed naming within a reasonable timeframe from the administrative leadership within the entity (such as the college dean, the department chair/school director) and faculty and staff members of the entity.  Each college should develop a procedure for responding to such requests for a written report that will maintain the required confidentiality of the naming process. 

The University Naming Committee will determine whether the proposal is responsible, appropriate, and consistent with the Board of Trustees governing document and the University's core values. After considering all relevant information, the Committee will make its recommendation for approval or rejection of the proposal to the President. 

The President may submit a recommendation to the Board of Trustees for final approval of the naming of a facility with a functional/general name. The President may submit the naming of a University entity other than a facility to the Board of Trustees for their information. 

C. Facilities or Entities Named in Honor or Memory of Specific Individuals

A proposal to name a facility or an entity in honor/memory of a specific individual may be initiated by any Vice President or College Dean or through a written process that is signed by 10 or more members of the University community and submitted to the Vice President for University Advancement and the Vice President responsible for programs and activities housed in the facility or entity or the Director of Athletics when it is an athletic facility or entity.  Proposals may be resubmitted no sooner than two years following the denial of an initial proposal. 

Each proposal, as feasible, shall be accompanied by:

  1. a description of the facility or entity and the name proposed to be honored
  2. a biographical summary of the person proposed, and 
  3. a statement of rationale articulating the distinctiveness of the individual’s contributions to the University

The University Naming Committee will determine whether the proposed naming is responsible, appropriate, and consistent with the Board of Trustees governing document and the University's core values. After considering all relevant information, the Committee will make its recommendation for approval or rejection to the President.  The Board of Trustees will have final approval of the naming of facilities named in honor or memory of specific individuals. The President will have final approval in the case of naming entities in honor or memory of specific individuals. 

D. Facilities or Entities Named Based on a gift to the University

Gift-based naming proposals for eligible university facilities and university entities require the prior approval of the Vice President for University Advancement and the Vice President responsible for the programs or activities housed in the facility or entity or the Director of Athletics when it is an athletic facility or entity, before being forwarded to the University Naming Committee. The Vice President for University Advancement or his/her designee shall submit a proposal to the University Naming Committee that includes: 

  1. a description of the facility or entity and the name proposed, 
  2. a biographical summary of the person(s), the corporation, or other entity for the proposed name, 
  3. the donor associated with the proposal (Anonymous donors should be identified as such.), 
  4. a statement of the rationale for the naming including verification that the donor met established guidelines for donations receiving recognition through naming of the facility or entity, and 
  5. an assessment of any potential risks to the University in naming the facility or entity for this individual(s), corporation, or other entity. 

The University Naming Committee will determine whether the proposal is responsible appropriate, and consistent with the Board of Trustees governing document and the University's core values. After considering all relevant information, the Committee will make its recommendation for approval or rejection of the proposal to the President.  The Board of Trustees shall have final approval of the naming of facilities based on gifts to the University. In the case of naming of an entity based on gifts to the University, the President shall have final approval. 

E. Implementation 

Upon final approval of a name for a facility or entity, the Office of the President will notify the campus community of the new or changed name.  Any new signs, plaques or markers shall be provided and shall conform to the University policy and design standards related to campus signage and graphics. 

Upon final approval of names of facilities or entities in honor/memory of specific individuals, the implementation, notification, ceremonies and signage will be carried out under the direction of the President. 

The University Office of Facilities Planning and Construction will maintain an official list of all university facilities and their approved functional/general or in honor or memory of names.  Complete files and records of all background data and proceedings leading to the assignment or change of the name of any facility will be maintained by that office. 

The Vice President for Advancement will maintain an official list of all University facilities and entities with their approved names that are the result of a gift to the University, along with complete files and records of all background data and proceedings leading to the assignment or change of the name of any campus facility or entity. 

Initiating body: President's Office

Contact: Assistant to the President (309-438-5677)

Revised on: June 2020


2020-09-30T13:16:02.657-05:00 2020
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