Racial Justice Statement

Dear Pioneers,

In light of the racial issues that have existed long before the summer of 2020, we stand in support and unity with the surrounding schools and community members that have voiced their statements of anti-racism, and pledge to hold true to these statements and fight the injustices that are present in our own communities.

This summer, President King had expressed in an email to our students that “an important part of this [journey] is standing with you, standing together, and sharing our stories and our journeys together and respectfully.” We want to ensure that we stand by this commitment with action steps that uphold our biblical values that are encompassed in our slogan “Christ’s Kingdom First.” The kingdom of God is diverse, as is the community that we are a part of here at Malone. We believe that everyone is created in the image of God and that each individual has dignity and inherent value, as well as the right to be heard, loved, and protected.

Aligning with the University’s fifth Foundational Principle which states in part, “We live and learn in a community that manifests and develops concern for others;” as Christians, we are called to “love our neighbor as ourselves.” An important element of loving our neighbor is lamenting and acting against the injustices that are incurred against them. As stated in Isaiah 1:17a, “Learn to do right; seek justice. Defend the oppressed.”

To begin these steps, we will release monthly updates from our Diversity and Inclusion Committee, which is an internal team of faculty, staff, and students who have been working together to create a more welcoming, diverse, and supportive community at Malone and intentionally creating space for these conversations, while forming plans and pathways in which to act. These updates will consist of the details and progress being made in these meetings and across our campus community, to allow for further united action from the Malone community.

Led by Student Senate and in collaboration with the Diversity and Inclusion Committee, we will also begin posting infographic posters across campus that are designed by students and will discuss different aspects of racism, education on the long-standing history of systematic racism, how to be anti-racist, and other ways to lament with and stand together with our neighbor against racial injustice.

The Multicultural Services Department and the Diversity and Inclusion Committee, led by Brenda Stevens, have been instrumental in laying the groundwork for these steps moving forward. However, we believe the responsibility to initiate and facilitate these actions and conversations does not rest solely on the Multicultural Services Department, and we will work to increase support and involvement from other departments and the Malone community as a whole.

We acknowledge and lament the lack of progress and the ways in which this has informed the experience of our students and colleagues of color. While there have been productive conversations and education happening internally, we are aware that the progress being made has not been sufficiently shared with our Malone community and perhaps most importantly, with our student body. For that, we apologize, and in moving forward, we will strive to improve communication and pursue tangible actions that demonstrate our commitment to standing with our students, staff, and faculty of color. When Malone was established in 1892, it was open for men, women, and people of color to attend. Malone was ahead of its time in that choice, and with this statement and the actions that follow, we are striving to stay true to our roots.

We pray that this statement will challenge each of us individually and as a campus community to make “Christ’s Kingdom First” not just our slogan, but our mindset in all that we say and do. As stated before, the kingdom of God is diverse, and in the words of President King, “No matter who you are, where you are from, or what you have experienced in your life journey to Malone…We want you to always know, you are welcome here.”

This Formal document was co-signed by the following individuals:

  • David King, President
  • Brenda Stevens, Director of Multicultural Services
  • Jennifer Bilek, Vice President for Human Resources & Community
  • Justine Chester, Coordinator of Multicultural Recruitment
  • Annie Kadlecek, President of Student Senate
  • Anna Meadows, Director of the Center for Student Success
  • Greg Miller, Provost
  • Xavier Moore, Student Senator, Director, Multicultural Services
  • Christina Schnyders, Chair, Faculty Senate
  • Melody Scott, Chief Student Development Officer