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Cleveland State University Board of Trustees votes to change name of Cleveland-Marshall College of Law

School will be renamed Cleveland State University College of Law
Cleveland State University.
Posted at 2:33 PM, Nov 17, 2022
and last updated 2022-11-17 14:33:32-05

CLEVELAND — The decision to remove a slave owner's name from Cleveland State University's campus has been approved. The university's board voted Thursday to change the name of the Cleveland-Marshall College of Law, named after former chief justice John Marshall, to the Cleveland State University College of Law.

The vote was unanimous.

“This is a significant decision and not one the Board took lightly,” said Board Chair David Reynolds. “While we understand the connection many of our alumni and others have to the Marshall name, the ad hoc committee and president made a compelling case. Removing the name is in the best interest of today’s CSU.”

The university said the ad hoc committee found that "Marshall’s beliefs and actions related to slaveholding are contrary to the values of the University and its commitment to justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion for all members of its community."

According to the university, "CSU inherited the name when it acquired the school in 1969. The name Cleveland-Marshall College of Law was the result of a merger of the John Marshall College of Law and the Cleveland Law School in 1946."

CSU's board also acknowledged Marshall's impacts on law that are still being taught today.

“There is no dispute that Chief Justice John Marshall made significant and enduring contributions to American jurisprudence, and to the importance of the Constitution in establishing our democracy,” said Lee Fisher, dean of the College of Law. "Marshall’s writings, decisions and judicial legacy remain an important part of our curriculum and a CSU Law education.”

CSU isn't the first school to remove Marshall's name from campus. Last year, the Chicago School of Law removed Marshall's name.

RELATED: Ad Hoc Committee recommends changing the name of CSU's Marshall School of Law

You can watch more about the efforts to change the name of CSU's College of Law in the player below:

Ad Hoc Committee recommends changing the name of CSU's Marshall School of Law

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