Dear members of the Wake Forest community,

I am pleased to announce that Wake Forest plans to name four roads on the Reynolda Campus in honor of four trailblazing professors: Elizabeth Phillips, Dolly McPherson, Marjorie “Marge” Crisp and Herman Eure. Each person honored has made an indelible mark on the University — and telling their stories expands the narrative of leadership and excellence at Wake Forest. This news story and short video both provide some of the background on each honoree. 

This decision is based on a significant body of work by our campus community. In the past spring semester, I convened the ad hoc Administrative Committee for Honorifics to design and pilot a process for recommending new names for four campus roads, including two sections of road originally named for Washington Manly Wingate. I approved the Committee’s final recommendation, which the Board of Trustees unanimously endorsed at its June meeting. Earlier this month, the University submitted application materials to the City of Winston-Salem as part of the official process for road naming, and we expect a decision from the City in mid-August. With City approval, we will install new street signs in the fall. Opportunities for the community to learn more about each honoree and their roles in Wake Forest’s history will be announced in August. 

Naming a feature of our campus landscape is a rare occurrence and one of the highest honors a University can bestow, and as such, great care was taken by all involved in this process. I am especially grateful to Vice President for Diversity and Inclusion and Chief Diversity Officer José Villalba and former Provost Rogan Kersh, who co-chaired the ad hoc Committee through its thoughtful and thorough deliberations, and to the Committee’s members. A special thanks to all those who contributed meaningfully over the past two or more years to the establishment of our Guiding Principles for Naming, which provided a north star for the ad hoc Committee’s work. 

Our shared values shine through the selection of these honorees, and I am thrilled that many more members of our community will now learn about each of them because of this action.


Susan R. Wente, Ph.D.

Categories: Emails