The University recently held a virtual dedication of the Memorial to Enslaved Laborers, which is the product of years of research to identify the enslaved men and women who worked on Grounds and to honor them.
UVA President Jim Ryan welcomed the attendees, saying that as the memorial to UVA’s enslaved laborers looks backward at our past, this new legislation, and the program it creates, look to the future.
Speakers included Northam and Reid, both of whom have daughters who attended UVA; Robin Reaves Burke, a member of the NAACP of Loudoun County and a descendant of the Hemings family; and Carolyn Mitchell Dillard, University-community liaison in UVA’s Division of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion and a representative of the Descendants of Enslaved Communities at UVA.
“The new law establishes a program that will help UVA and other schools in Virginia tell future generations the full story of our past association with slavery, by creating memorials like this one,” Ryan said. “The program will also help us find new ways to support the descendants of the enslaved laborers that we memorialize here and elsewhere.