BOZEMAN — A public listening session was held at Montana State University on Wednesday so community members could voice their thoughts regarding the naming of a new building on campus "Gianforte Hall."
MSU announced a $50 million gift from the Gianforte Family Foundation in February, going toward the construction of a building to host the MSU Gianforte School of Computing.
One by one on Wednesday evening, people approached the podium to express their opinions on the matter, or elected to write their testimony down to turn in to the Board of Regents. A recording of the meeting will be transcribed and given to the Board to consider at their meeting on May 18 and 19.
“We the members of the Department of Political Science at Montana State University, here in Bozeman, strongly object to naming the new physical home of the school of computing — Gianforte Hall,” David Parker, Head of the Political Science Department said.
Out of 20 speakers, 18 of them were against the proposed name. A mixture of students, faculty, alumni, and community members spoke at the meeting that lasted about an hour. Concerns expressed by the public included a building sharing a name with a current state employee, Gov. Greg Gianforte, and how to recognize a donation of this size.
Comments can be submitted by letter to University Communications, c/o Naming Comments, P.O. Box 172220, Bozeman, MT 59717-2220, or via email to email@example.com. Comments are due by Monday, May 16, and will be forwarded to the members of the Montana Board of Regents.