Joint Statement on the Renaming of Nichols Fountain & Parkway

In response to KCMO Parks & Recreation Commissioner Christopher Goode to rename the J.C. Nichols Fountain and the adjacent J.C. Nichols Parkway, the Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce, the Civic Council of Greater Kansas City, and Visit KC are jointly issuing the following statement on behalf of their organizations:

“The business community is committed to making Kansas City a place of opportunity for everyone. We support the process underway to rename the fountain and parkway because we reject policies that were exclusionary, racist and wrong. We feel that our public infrastructure should reflect the values of diversity and inclusion, to which we aspire and are committed.”

KC Chamber Chair Carolyn Watley says, “At this critical moment in our history, renaming the fountain and parkway would be an important step into a better future and a concrete symbol of a Kansas City that is a welcoming community with opportunity for all. The Chamber is committed to the work of ending the systemic racism that has impacted African-Americans in Kansas City for too long.  We must advance agendas that create lasting change, reflecting our desire for an equitable Kansas City where every resident can prosper.”

Civic Council Chair Steve Edwards says, “Kansas City can only be vibrant and successful when our prosperity is truly shared by all. This work will be difficult and requires long-term commitment, because we have a lot of history to overcome. We can take an important step by ensuring our public structures reflect our values of diversity and inclusion.”

Jason Fulvi, President & CEO of Visit KC added, “At Visit KC, we strive to connect Kansas City to the world. The simple but important action of renaming these memorials is a first step as we continue to make our region more welcoming to visitors and convention attendees. For us to truly be the cosmopolitan city we wish to be, we must recognize opportunities to enact change, even if in seemingly small but symbolic ways.”