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Liberty University Hires New Staff Members To Serve in Diversity Roles Amid Racial Tension


Liberty University announced on Tuesday that two new staff members will join the college as part of their continued efforts to achieve diversity within the campus.

Former Liberty head football coach Turner Gill and Liberty alumnus Kelvin Edwards will return to the university as members of the executive team.

Gill will serve as executive vice president of Diversity, Development, and Inclusion, and Edwards will be the executive vice president of Management Efficiencies and Diversity.

The news comes as racial tension has spread both on campus and among its alumni ranks. 

CBN News previously reported that a tweet by Liberty President Jerry Falwell Jr., which was posted just days after George Floyd's death, struck a nerve with students who were offended by its content.

In a comment about Gov. Ralph Northam's (D-VA) mask mandate, Falwell displayed a controversial photo from a page in Northam's medical school yearbook which notoriously shows one student dressed in blackface and another in a Ku Klux Klan robe and hood. 

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Twelve days later, Falwell deleted the tweet saying, "I understand by tweeting an image to remind all of the governor's racist past I actually refreshed the trauma that image caused and offended some by using the image to make a political point." 

For many, however, the damage was done as several standout black athletes chose to transfer from the university.

But Gill and Edwards say they are overjoyed to the return to Liberty and to serve in their new positions.

"I am thrilled to be returning and to serve in my new role," Gill explained. "We want the future leaders in our country and internationally to be trained at a top-notch Christian university so that people are exposed to the Gospel, are educated with Christian values, and are living out their purpose according to God's will."

"My wife, Tiawna, and I are excited to continue our relationship with Liberty University and to uphold the charge of building Champions for Christ," Edwards declared. 

And Falwell announced that he is proud to welcome Gill and Edwards to the executive team.

"We are honored to have Turner Gill back at Liberty as well as Kelvin Edwards, an alumnus, and successful businessman. As executive vice presidents, they will help us demonstrate our commitment to reuniting people — both Republicans and Democrats — who have been divided by the establishment politicians."

Despite the controversy, the school is experiencing record online enrollment and expects to be full on-campus this fall, reporting 27 percent of its student body is black.

Many black alumni, however, say they can no longer recommend Liberty to students in their churches and communities.

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