Brady Arts District Businesses Vote To Change District's Name

Friday, August 25th 2017, 5:16 pm

By: News On 6

Members of the organization comprised of business owners in the Brady Arts District in downtown Tulsa voted to change the district's name.

At a meeting Friday afternoon, the members voted unanimously to change the name. Now they will begin the process of selecting a new name.

“We have established a process for all members to participate in the rebranding of the district," said Bob Fleischman, president of the association.

Fleischman said the district has gone through a total redefinition and rebirth - and that lends itself perfectly to a new name.

A small group of businesses had been working on the idea of a name change for the past several months. The change will apply only to what the organization calls itself.  

"We want to be totally inclusive, and we want everyone to come and participate in the growth of the district here downtown," Fleischman said.

It will be a re-branding and re-marketing of the district rather than - at this time - any re-naming of streets.

In August of 2013, the Tulsa City Council voted to rename Brady Street. The street was originally named for Tate Brady, one of the founders of Tulsa. The city council decided to rename it to honor Civil War photographer Mathew Brady instead, after a controversy about Tate Brady's membership in the KKK and reports that he may have been involved in the Tulsa Race Riot. 

1/27/2014 Related Story: 'Brady Street' Signs Replaced In Downtown Tulsa

The group's news release makes no mention of Tate Brady or the controversy over his background. 

"I think getting rid of any negative connotations will be good," said Jean Ann Fausser, vice chair of 108 Contemporary art museum. "Our stipulation for many of the arts organizations is that arts remain in the title, but we are open to a lot of other suggestions."

Options for the new name are still being discussed, but Fleishman said the change has been quietly in the works for several months.

"I prefer to think we were trying to stay ahead of this," he said. "We actually had a timetable in place that we accelerated a little bit because we didn't want it to appear that we were responding to any instances that have happened here nationally."

"I think we all had something to say. It was a good discussion and a unanimous decision, so I think we move forward now," Fausser said.

It says the group will announce details about the timeline for the name change in the next several days.


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