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Clocktower Diversity Project

The Centralia College Clocktower Diversity Project, established in 1997, honors Northwest individuals and groups who have made significant contributions to the history, community or culture of the Northwest, or have distinguished themselves in their chosen fields. The clocktower project pays tribute to a broad range of individuals, recognizing and honoring persons of diversity who have had a substantial impact on our society.

Jimi Hendrix clocktower honoree Centralia College Clocktower

Those selected are honored with an engraving placed at the base of the college's clock tower, near the center of campus. Current honorees include the Cowlitz People, a prominent tribe in Southwest Washington; George Tsutakawa, noted second-generation Japanese-American artist/sculptor; Jimi Hendrix, musician/composer; Floyd Schmoe, peace activist/humanitarian; Dixy Lee Ray, former Washington governor; Hazel Pete and Billy Frank, Jr., native Americans; Merce Cunningham, dance choreographer; George and Mary Washington, founders of Centralia; Mother Joseph, educator; Elmer Smith, labor advocate; and Juan Perez, Spanish explorer.

History of College Diversity Projects

Clocktower Project History, Fall 1993-Spring 1997

  • The Cultural Pluralism Infusion team suggested that the Clocktower be used for educational purposes, to recognize cultural contributions of diverse persons.
  • A Clocktower subcommittee of the Cultural Pluralism Infusion team developed a nomination form and solicited nominations from the campus (students, faculty, staff). Criteria for nominations: Each person should represent the diversity of people who have made significant contributions to culture and community in the United States or world.
  • Associated Students contacted for support of project; ASCC voted to contribute $7000 to the project.
  • Additional nominations solicited, focus narrowed to general region of Pacific Northwest; research on nominees conducted by Clocktower subcommittee; discussions with Administration regarding type of materials for panels.
  • List of 12 researched nominees forwarded to President's Cabinet and ASCC for review/selection of honorees.
  • President's Cabinet met with ASCC Executive Board; selected 7 honorees; Board of Trustees informed of selection of honorees.
  • Contacted persons identified for each honoree; honorees or representatives notified of selection.
  • Panel pictures chosen; text drafted, reviewed by honorees; text and pictures forwarded to Quiring Monuments in preparation for production of panels.
  • Clocktower Event Planning group convened; mailing list, brochure, budget developed.
  • Commemorative panel and 7 panels unveiled to recognize George Washington/Mary Cooness, Mother Joseph, Dixy Lee Ray, Merce Cunningham, Hazel Pete, Billy Frank Jr., and Jimi Hendrix, for contributions to the culture of the Pacific Northwest and the U.S.

Diversity @ Centralia College