Back in February, we published a story about the namesakes of several buildings on NC State’s campus (and other buildings on UNC system campuses), many of which have roots in white supremacy. While we mentioned NC State’s Talley Student Union in the story, we didn’t elaborate on the man for whom it is named—
Banks C. Talley II, the university’s longtime vice chancellor for student affairs and a champion for diversity and opportunities for all students to achieve a balanced education. This month, we heard from Banks C. Talley’s son, Banks C. Talley III, who lives in Raleigh and has thoughts about his father’s legacy. We’re publishing his letter here. 

Dear INDY Editors, 

This is just a polite suggestion but the next time you write an article about renaming NCSU (or other UNC system campus buildings), it might be relevant to reach out to the children of the people you mention in your article. Some of us are very much alive and still living in the Triangle and we care very much about our parents’ legacy.

My Dad gave his entire career (with the exception of 2 leaves of absence, (1. To serve as Governor Hunt’s 1st Chief of Staff in 1977 and 2. To serve as the Executive Vice President of the National Trust for Historic Preservation) to NC State University. He loved the university, he cared deeply about diversity and equal rights for women. He made sure to hire diverse leaders and he mentored (quite literally) thousands of undergraduate and graduate students during his 33 initial years of service. In the latter stages of his career, he mentored even more students and  staff through his work for Arts NC State (22 years worth).

I take no issue with mentioning his name in the article BUT please (the next time) take a few column inches to expand upon the contributions of the person you are referencing. When the Talley Student Union was named after my father, it was the greatest honor of his life and career. He was no racist but rather a very deserving leader and administrator.

Thank you and keep doing that “INDY” thing!

Banks C. Talley III
NCSU ‘92, ‘96 and ‘02

The INDY was also proud to sponsor what was a very successful 45th annual Festival for the Eno this year. We received the following message from Rabbi Jonathan Gerard, who had some thoughts on the festival’s musical lineup (please note—we have no official say in Eno Fest’s selection of performers but second the call for a movement from the Trout Quintet along the river—there’s always next year!).

To the Editor:

Seventy two musical performances at the Eno River Festival over two days and no klezmer band? I’m disappointed. Thanks for your terrific issue devoted to the Festival. It motivated us to go and it enhanced our day at the park. But next year I hope for more musical diversity—perhaps even some Ragtime and Bach along with the blues, bluegrass, and hillbilly. Or maybe a movement from the Trout Quintet along the river.

Jonathan Gerard

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