Twin Memorials Working Group


Background

President Fenves announced the reappointment and expansion of the Task Force on Untold Stories and Disenfranchised Populations in October 2020. In their report delivered on April 1, 2021, the Task Force proposed a number of recommendations to memorialize Indigenous peoples who previously lived on land now owned by Emory, including the development of "physical reminders and remembrance rituals on campus such as a Muscogee (Creek) Language Path that highlights Muscogee language and knowledge." 

In a letter to the Emory community on June 28, 2021, President Fenves announced the establishment of the Twin Memorials Working Group to move forward and implement a plan for memorials that will articulate and interconnect the shared histories of the Emory and Oxford campuses.

Charge

Building on the recommendations from the report of the Task Force on Untold Stories and Disenfranchised Populations, materials in the Emory Libraries, and relevant and available scholarship, the Twin Memorials Working Group is charged with:

  • drafting a Request for Proposals for architectural firms to design and construct Twin Memorials to honor the enslaved individuals and their descendants who lived and worked on the original campus of Emory at Oxford College;
  • developing plans for continued memorialization of Emory’s enslaved laborers through annual events, campus-wide programming, orientation for new students to the Oxford and Atlanta campuses, and recognition of those who continued to work on the Atlanta and Oxford campuses following emancipation; and
  • collaborating with various stakeholders to develop initiatives that contribute to making Emory’s past known to internal and external audiences.

President Fenves appointed, as chairs of the working group, Douglas Hicks, dean of Oxford College and William R. Kenan Jr. Professor of Religion, and Gregory Ellison II 99C, associate professor of pastoral care and counseling at Candler School of Theology.

The working group will coordinate community input, facilitate the review of architectural firms with a design concept for the Twin Memorials, and present recommendations to the president. 

Further Background and News

READ THE TASK FORCE EXECUTIVE SUMMARY  READ THE EMORY NEWS CENTER STORY

Working Group Membership

Co-Chairs

Email the chairs

Gregory Ellison II 99C
Associate professor of pastoral care and counseling, Candler School of Theology

Bio of Professor Ellison

Douglas Hicks
Dean and William R. Kenan Jr. Professor of Religion, Oxford College

Bio of Dean Hicks

Faculty
NameTitle
Tayari JonesCharles Howard Candler Professor of English and Creative Writing
Molly McGehee 07PhDAssociate Dean for Faculty Development, Director of the Oxford Center for Teaching and Scholarship, and Associate Professor of English and American Studies
Walter RuckerProfessor, Department of African American Studies and History

Students
NameSchool
Rachel DingPresident, Student Government Association
Emma SveenPresident, Graduate Student Government Association

Staff
NameTitle
James JohnsonUniversity Landscape Architect

Administrators
NameTitle
Enku GelayeSenior Vice President and Dean of Campus Life
Joe MoonDean for Campus Life

Alumni
NameTitle
Avis Williams 78Ox 98C 08T 18TCommunity Liaison, Putnam County Charter School System

Consultants
NameTitle
Jonathan ButlerFormer president of Emory Alumni Board
Yolanda CooperDean, University Libraries
Carol HendersonVice Provost for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion; Chief Diversity Officer; and Adviser to the President
Rev. Gregory W. McGonigleUniversity Chaplain and Dean of Spiritual and Religious Life
Robin MoreyVice President and Chief Planning Officer of Campus Services
David M. SchusterChair, University Public Art Committee

Faculty
NameTitle
Sarah DobbsExecutive Administrative Assistant, Oxford College