Integrated Science Building will become 17th chancellor’s namesake
Editor’s note: Amid the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, the April 30 dedication of Gray-Little Hall has been postponed. Kansas Alumni and the Association will report details for a later event as soon as they are available.
Bernadette Gray-Little, who led the University from 2009 to 2017, will return to the Hill April 30 to celebrate the official renaming of the Integrated Science Building in her honor. The long-awaited hub for research and education in the sciences, which opened in 2018, will become Gray-Little Hall.
The Kansas Board of Regents in December approved the building’s new name, along with a new title for KU’s 17th leader: chancellor emerita.
“Chancellor Gray-Little guided KU to unprecedented success, elevated the University’s stature, and transformed the way KU serves the state,” said Chancellor Doug Girod. “Among her many accomplishments was the development of the Integrated Science Building to provide outstanding new research space at a crucial moment in the University’s history.”
The building comprises approximately 280,000 square feet of space for teaching, learning and interdisciplinary research in chemistry, medicinal chemistry, physics, molecular biosciences and related fields. It is the centerpiece of the vibrant new Central District, a once-in-a-generation project on the Lawrence campus. During Gray-Little’s eight-year tenure, KU completed 50 capital improvement projects totaling $700 million.
She guided other transformations, advancing the University’s mission to educate future leaders, build healthy communities and make life-changing discoveries:
• New admissions standards, scholarships and more robust student recruitment led to five straight years of growth in the freshman class.
• In 2012, KU succeeded in its long quest to achieve National Cancer Institute designation.
• The Schools of Engineering, Pharmacy, Medicine and Nursing expanded.
• With state funding and donors’ support, KU recruited 12 renowned scholars to become new Foundation Distinguished Professors.
• KU Endowment completed a record-setting $1.66 billion fundraising campaign.
Along with her achievements, Girod lauded his predecessor’s leadership style. “Chancellor Gray-Little led with a special dignity and grace that made her a role model for Jayhawks everywhere” he said. “We are thrilled to rename such an important building in her honor and to forever have the pleasure of referring to her as Chancellor Emerita Bernadette Gray-Little.”