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Editor: Paul L. Caron, Dean
Pepperdine University School of Law

Sunday, November 25, 2018

Why Is Walter F. George Disappearing From Mercer Law School?

Mercer13WMAZ, Why Is Walter F. George Disappearing From Mercer's Law School?:

Over the summer, the Mercer Law School made a small cosmetic change -- they altered the name of the sign on their front lawn.

That decision has prompted a big discussion on the legacy surrounding its namesake.

Mercer's law school is formally known as the Walter F. George School of Law, named after the prominent senator who held a spot in Washington from 1922-1957.

He was also a segregationist and is the first name signed on the document known as the Southern Manifesto, which opposed Brown vs. Board of Education -- the Supreme Court decision that determined the segregation of public schools was unconstitutional.

The law school's new sign left off his name.

When asked about the change, Mercer University said the decision was based upon rebranding its schools named after individuals.

"Mercer University had decided with all of its different schools and colleges to emphasize the Mercer brand, which has a greater national name than the individual school names, which can be confusing on a national level," said dean of the law school, Cathy Cox. Cox said that the sign change was a decision years in the making, decided by the Board of Trustees at least three years ago.

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