Naming and Recognition Guidelines

Effective Date: November 13, 2003

SCOPE
This policy applies to all offices and divisions of Gallaudet University.

POLICY
Gallaudet University has a long-standing tradition of naming University properties, academic and non-academic programs, and facilities in honor of persons or entities that have made important non-financial contributions to enable the teaching, research and public service mission of the University. As the need for private contributions to the University continues to increase however, there is an opportunity for Gallaudet to facilitate financial gifts by naming University structures and programs in honor of significant financial contributors to the University. All naming in recognition of an honoree or donor must be consistent with the University's goals and mission. Accordingly, all such proposals shall be reviewed and approved in accordance with this policy, and with related University policies and guidelines.

For the purpose of this policy, naming opportunities refer to the christening of campus facilities and programs in recognition of both philanthropic and non-philanthropic contributions. Recognition opportunities do not necessarily involve naming of facilities but serve the important purpose of publicly recognizing the individuals or entities for their non-financial contributions to the University. Philanthropic contributions refer to monetary gifts.

  1. Guidelines For Naming And Recognition Opportunities
    1. In regards to both philanthropic and non-philanthropic initiated naming opportunities, the Board of Trustees reserves the naming of all major capital assets, including new and existing buildings, and large external areas, in recognition of significant contributions towards the University's goals and mission. The Board reserves the right to approve the name of all such capital assets.
      1. No commitment regarding naming or recognition shall be made to a donor or a non-donor or his or her designated representative prior to approval of the related proposal for naming. Each proposal shall be made in writing in accordance with these policy guidelines. The proposal and record of the action taken shall be maintained in the campus permanent archives.
      2. Each proposal for naming shall be considered on its merits. In this regard, all due attention shall be given to both the long-term and short-term appropriateness of a naming and recognition.
      3. A proposal for naming shall include documentation of the following:
        1. A thorough analysis of the proposal in relation to naming policy and guidelines, as well as a financial review.
        2. A consultation process to provide the benefit of the collective institutional memory and a broad campus perspective with regard to naming activities. The process shall involve one or both of the following: (1) a standing committee on naming to include faculty, teacher, staff, student, and alumni representation; (2) or an appropriate consultative process that represents broad institutional interests.
        3. Review by the designated counsel or attorney of the University, as appropriate.
      4. All proposals to name or recognize buildings, large external areas, and major portions of facilities or academic programs must be screened by the Office of the President in accordance with this policy and submitted to the Board of Trustees for review and approval.
      5. Notwithstanding any other provision of this policy, no naming or recognition in major facilities and programs will be approved or continued that will call into serious question the public respect of the University.
      6. No name or recognition will be approved that will imply the University's endorsement of a partisan political or ideological position. This does not preclude a naming with the name of an individual who has at one time held public office.
      7. When a facility, area or program is named in recognition of a donor or a non-donor honoree, that name will generally be effective for the useful life of the facility or the designated use of the area. If a facility must be replaced or subsequently renovated, or the use of an area re-designated, all efforts will be made to ensure that the past name is adequately recognized in the new or renovated facility.
      8. In any proposal for naming an academic or non-academic program in recognition of a donor or non-donor honoree, consideration should be given to ensure that any associated funding will be sufficient to sustain the program, since the naming shall be in effect for the life of the program.
      9. When the proposed naming of a facility would recognize an individual, the complete name of the individual shall be used. The last name of the individual so honored may be used in referring informally to the facility and may be used on the name plaque affixed to the facility.
    2. The naming of internal spaces and non-major capital assets is an administrative decision to be made by the President. When appropriate, the President's Recognition Committee assists the President in discharging this responsibility.
    3. The terms of reference of the President's Recognition Committee shall be to recommend to the President that an internal space or non-major facility be named to reflect its use; or to honor someone associated with the University; or when appropriate, to recognize a donor.
    4. The Recognition Committee shall respond to requests from the President or his/her designate in this matter.
    5. The Office of Planning shall be responsible for maintaining and updating an inventory of all named assets approved by the President.
    6. The University reserves the right to decide on the physical displays which may accompany named recognition on its property.
  2. Naming Involving Non-Philanthropic Contributions
    1. The President's Recognition Committee, chaired by the Special Assistant to the President for Planning is responsible for reviewing all names proposed for University properties, academic and non-academic programs, and facilities (existing and planned outdoor facilities, programs, formal recognition structures such as hall of fame and other smaller opportunities). These recommendations will be forwarded to the President and the Board of Trustees for approval. All other recognition opportunities will be reviewed, approved and overseen by the Recognition Committee.
    2. The Recognition Committee will also oversee any in-kind gifts that do not meet the criteria below for Naming Involving Philanthropic Contributions. If applicable, they will work with the Development Office in providing the appropriate acknowledgement for the gifts that includes any appropriate tax information.
    3. No commitment for recognition shall be made prior to approval of the proposed name.
    4. A proposed honoree shall have achieved distinction in one or more of the following ways:
      1. While serving the University in an academic capacity, the individual has demonstrated high scholarly distinction and has earned a national or international reputation.
      2. While serving the University in an important administrative capacity, the individual has rendered distinguished service that warrants recognition of the individual's exceptional contributions to the welfare of the University.
      3. The individual has contributed in truly exceptional ways to the welfare of the institution and/or the deaf community, or achieved such unique distinction as to warrant recognition.
    5. When an individual has served the University in an academic or important administrative capacity, or has served nation in an elected or appointed position, a proposal may be made for naming in honor of the individual on the earlier of the following:
      1. Two years after retirement or other separation from the University or from elected or appointed office; or
      2. Two years after the person's death, if the person had not yet retired or otherwise separated from the University.
    6. While the University strives to maintain names in perpetuity, in the event that substantial renovation, demolition and consequently new construction, requires private funding and naming opportunities, the University will to the best of its ability ensure that the original name be preserved and publicly recognized in some approved way in the new or renovated space. This work associated with this special recognition will be assigned to the President's Recognition Committee in collaboration with the Executive Director of Institutional Advancement and the Director of Construction Services.
    7. Recognition opportunities on existing facilities, areas, and programs are available only in as much as the affected facilities, areas or programs have not received any private support in the past. In special cases, recognition opportunities will be afforded in buildings that have received private support and have naming opportunities in them. The Executive Director of Institutional Advancement and the President must approve these recognition opportunities.
    8. When appropriate, costs related to the recognition opportunities, specifically plaques, benches, and similar items will be incurred by the President's Office with oversight from the President's Recognition Committee.
    9. The Recognition Committee shall be responsible for setting guidelines governing naming opportunities and for reviewing related recognition proposals for legal entities such as non-profit and for-profit organizations.
  3. Naming Involving Philanthropic Contributions
    1. Designated legal counsel of the University, as appropriate, shall review draft language for a gift agreement that includes the proposed naming of a University property, academic and non-academic program, and/or facility in recognition of the philanthropic contribution.
      1. No commitment for naming shall be made prior to approval of the proposed name.
      2. In reviewing a request for approval of naming, consideration shall be given to: (1) the significance of the proposed gift as it relates to the realization and/or success of the project or to the enhancement of the project's usefulness to the University; (2) the urgency of need for the project or for support funds for the project; (3) the reputation and integrity of the individual or entity whose name is proposed; and, (4) the relationship of the individual or entity to the University.
    2. All naming opportunities are afforded when support is given to institutional funding priorities defined by the President, Provost, Vice President and Board of Trustees. All support to areas, programs, or funds not defined as an institutional funding priority need to have internal support and approval for accepting this gift either from a department, or administrator.
    3. In regards to all naming opportunities in University properties, academic and non-academic programs, and facilities, the Executive Director of Institutional Advancement, along with designated administrators that will include but not limited to the Director of Construction Services (for facilities, grounds) and University Administrator (for programs) will oversee and assign responsibility for oversight on these naming opportunities.
      1. For naming opportunities for and within new and renovated facilities, a designated Ad Hoc Committee within the Building Committee will oversee and recommend naming opportunities to the President and Board of Trustees. These proposed names, along with the naming levels will be shared with the Recognition Committee for their review.
    4. Upon approval of a name by the President, or Board of Trustees, a gift contract previously reviewed by legal counsel will be completed and signed by all parties involved. (i.e., the University and donor or designated representative). The contract should include a clause regarding the reconstruction or dissolution of the program.
    5. Naming of new or renovated facilities ordinarily will only occur when at least 51% of the total construction costs or endowment are committed or secured.
    6. Names of academic programs ordinarily will be acceptable only upon provision of 51% or more of a program costs.
    7. Tangible Personal Property such as art, antiques, manuscripts, equipment, benches, and similar items known, as "gifts-in-kind" must be related to the exempt purposes of Gallaudet and to the institutional funding priorities defined. Any in-kind gift will not be accepted unless there is a clearly defined need at Gallaudet and a specific department and/or administrator has conveyed the need in writing and is willing to accept and steward the gift on behalf of Gallaudet. Exceptions above can only be made by the President, and Vice Presidents or their designee.
    8. Endowed funds named in honor or in memory of an individual or individuals can be afforded the opportunity with a gift of $25,000 or greater.
    9. Endowed chairs in honor or memory of an individual require a gift of $1 million or greater.
    10. To avoid appearance of commercial influence or conflict of interest, additional due diligence should be taken before recommending the naming of a major program or area, building, open space, or roadway that involves the name of a corporation or a corporate foundation. The naming for an individual associated with a corporation should be handled as any naming for an individual.
    11. A naming conferred in recognition of a pledge is contingent on fulfillment of that pledge and will be approved on that condition.
    12. Any proposal to rename a facility or area or to add a second name in recognition of a gift shall be reviewed by the counsel or attorney of the University. Final approval is with the Board of Trustees. The review shall include any gift documents pertaining to the original gift and related naming, as well as the gift documents pertaining to the subsequent gift and proposed naming.
    13. When a facility that has been named in recognition of a gift or an individual has reached the end of its useful life and will be replaced or subsequently renovated, the replaced or renovated structure may be renamed in recognition of another gift in the event that substantial renovation, demolition and consequently new construction, requires private funding, the University will to the best of their ability ensure that the original name is preserved and publicly recognized in some approved way in the new or renovated space. This work associated with this special recognition will be given to the University Recognition Committee in collaboration with the Executive Director of Institutional Advancement and the Director of Construction Services.
  4. Naming And Recognition Of Campus Facilities
    1. The naming of facilities or features at the University falls into four classes:
      1. Class I: Facilities that are part of the outside environment of the University. They include buildings, complexes of buildings, roads, walkways, playing fields, parks, gardens, and plazas.
        1. Names in recognition of a non-donor for Class I facilities are to be approved by the Board of Trustees upon recommendation of the President following consultation with the President's Recognition Committee and the appropriate Dean when an academic area is involved.
        2. Names in recognition of a donor for Class I facilities are to be approved by the Board of Trustees upon recommendation of the President following consultation with the Executive Director of Institutional Advancement.
      2. Class II: Facilities that are part of inside space. They include library/reading rooms, laboratories, conference rooms, classrooms, galleries, recreational courts, lounges, hallways, and Hall of Fame.
        1. Names in recognition of a non-donor for Class II facilities are to be approved by the President upon recommendations of the President's Recognition Committee.
        2. Names in recognition of a donor for Class II facilities are to be approved by the President upon recommendations of the Executive Director of Institutional Advancement.
      3. Class III: Facilities that are made up of portable items. They include collections of art and/or artifacts and equipment - all identifiable because of specific focus or purposes.
        1. Names in recognition of a non-donor for Class III facilities are to be approved by the Provost or Vice President of Administration and Finance, and/or appropriate Dean or Executive Director upon the recommendation of the President's Recognition Committee.
        2. Names in recognition of a donor for Class III facilities are to be approved by the appropriate dean or executive director in consultation with the Provost or Vice President of Administration and Finance upon recommendation of the Executive Director of Institutional Advancement.
      4. Class IV: Tribute markers for recognition opportunities only. These include plaques, art works, medallions, or other markers usually in association with such features as trees, benches or small monuments. The display of tribute markers is to be approved by the President's Recognition Committee. The Committee shall also set guidelines with regard to the display of plaques and signs at the University, including those signifying induction in the Hall of Fame.
  5. Renaming
    1. A proposal to rename a facility or area or to add a second name shall adhere to the criteria outlined above. In addition, these principles shall be followed:
      1. Any proposal to rename a facility or area or to add a second name in recognition of a gift shall be reviewed by the designated legal counsel of the University. The review shall include any gift documents pertaining to the original gift and related naming, as well as the gift documents pertaining to the subsequent gift and proposed naming.
      2. When a facility that has been named in recognition of a gift or an individual has reached the end of its useful life and will be replaced or subsequently renovated, the replaced or renovated structure may be renamed in recognition of another gift.
      3. When an area named in recognition of a gift or in honor of an individual will be developed for another use, the new facility may be named in recognition of new gifts or accomplishments.
      4. Appropriate recognition of earlier donors and honorees shall be included in or adjacent to new and renovated facilities, as well as in redeveloped areas.
      5. When a facility or area is proposed for renaming, appropriate University officials will make all reasonable efforts to inform in advance the original donors or honorees and their immediate family members.
  6. Unnaming
    1. The University reserves the right to unname previously named areas or facilities in circumstances where its best interests are not served by the continued recognition of the names.
    2. Unnaming opportunities also exist in the events that the affected donors are unable to fulfill their pledges, and legal impropriety on the part of the donors make the gifts and names subject to reconsideration by the University.
  7. Changed Circumstances
    1. If the University proposes to change the function of a named facility or area, it must document the review of related gift agreements to determine if the proposed use is consistent with the restrictions that may have been previously stipulated. If the proposal for change in use is inconsistent, the University counsel or attorney of the University shall be consulted.
    2. If at any time following the approval of a naming, circumstances change substantially so that the continued use of that name may compromise the public trust, the counsel of attorney of the University will consult with appropriate legal experts regarding future action.
    3. Commercial companies contracted to provide products and services on campus may not change the official names of Class I facilities and structures for marketing purposes without the prior approval of appropriate University officials and/or the Board of Trustees.
    4. The President is authorized to review and approve exceptions to these policy requirements, except for matters related to naming opportunities for Class I facilities, programs, and structures.
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