U.Va. announces appointments to the President’s Commission on the University in the Age of Segregation

Commission include faculty, staff, student, community, and ex-officio members

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The commission will study the University’s role during segregation in order to provide advice and recommendations to the University president. 

Richard Dizon | Cavalier Daily

The University announced Wednesday its appointments to the President’s Commission on the University in the Age of Segregation.

The commission will study the University’s role during segregation in order to provide advice and recommendations to the University president. President-elect Jim Ryan will take office in August, succeeding outgoing University President Teresa Sullivan.

Choosing from a field of 120 candidates, Sullivan appointed 24 faculty, staff, students, and community members to be a part of the commission, which also includes five non-voting, ex-officio members. Four advisory boards will help guide the commission.

Sullivan announced the creation of the commission in February at the School of Law’s commemoration of the University’s first black student, Gregory Swanson.

Kirt von Daacke, an assistant dean and history professor, and Andrea Douglas, executive director of the Jefferson School African-American Heritage Center, will co-chair the commission. Von Daacke currently co-chairs the President’s Commission on Slavery and the University, of which Douglas is a member.

The President’s Commission on Slavery and the University was created by Sullivan in 2013 to provide advice and recommendations to the president on the University’s historical relationship with slavery and enslaved people. The commission further was charged with exploring and opportunities for the University to recognize its relationship with slavery. 

The commission includes University students, administrators, professors and staff — including Multicultural Student Services director Vicki Gist — and Charlottesville community members, activists and elected leaders, such as Charlottesville Mayor Nikuyah Walker.

Five University officials and employees will serve as the ex-officio members.

The National Advisory Board, Local Advisory Board, Student Advisory Board and Alumni Advisory Board will help inform the commission.

A full list of commissioners and members of the advisory boards can be found here.

The commission is chartered for four years and will commence this fall.

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