Marquette to Continue
Board Passes Resolution Prohibiting Use of Native
Imagery or Symbolism in Athletic Logo, Mascot,
September 22, 2004
MILWAUKEE – At their regularly scheduled meeting today, the
Marquette University Board of Trustees had a thoughtful discussion
on the topic of the university's athletics nickname. The
board has decided to continue this conversation and gather relevant
information and perspectives that will ultimately lead to a decision
as to whether Marquette remains the Golden Eagles or returns to
the “Warrior” nickname.
Because the board has decided to continue this discussion, it
felt strongly that it must also send a clear message that no discussion
of the nickname will involve returning to past athletics mascots
or logos invoking Native American imagery. Therefore, the board
passed a resolution explicitly stating that Marquette will prohibit
the use of Native American references, symbolism, or imagery in
its athletics logo, nickname, or mascot.
The resolution states in part, “Marquette University shall consistently
prohibit the use of Native American references and imagery in
its athletics logo, nickname, and mascot, and shall consistently
strive to avoid the use of images that diminish, limit, stereotype,
or are offensive to the character, history and culture of any
"While we do not know what the final result of this nickname
discussion will be, I am very pleased with the statement we are
making with this resolution,” said Rev. Robert Wild, S.J., president
of Marquette University. “We feel strongly that the use
of Native American imagery in our athletics can offend and stereotype
members of our human family. That was part of our past,
but it cannot be part of our future. This resolution makes
it clear that we will not make any decisions that are in opposition
to our Catholic, Jesuit values.”
Father Wild has begun conversations with leaders from Wisconsin's
Native American community and will continue to do so in order
to hear their perspectives on this issue. The Board also
decided to begin an organized process to gather information and
engage alumni, faculty, students, and other members of the Marquette
community on their perspectives on the nickname issue.
The Marquette Board of Trustees will revisit this topic at their
next regularly scheduled meeting which takes place in December.
From 1954 to 1993 the Marquette athletic nickname was “Warriors.”
In 1994, the university changed the name to “Golden Eagles” to
allow for a new name and mascot.
At Marquette 's commencement ceremony in May, Wayne Sanders,
Vice-Chair of the Board of Trustees, offered a donation if the
University would change its nickname back to Warriors. Marquette
President Rev. Robert Wild, S.J. immediately declined the donation
saying that he is open to a thoughtful discussion about the nickname,
but that this issue is not about money, but rather tradition,
pride and respect for human dignity.
The Marquette Board of Trustees is responsible for preserving
and enhancing the distinctive character as well as the educational,
fiscal, and legal well-being of the university and its students.