Statement on the TAAF Grant Read

Invitation to Members to Sign Petition Regarding Purdue University Northwest Chancellor Thomas Keon

Dear AAAS Members,

As many of you are aware, Purdue University Northwest Chancellor Thomas Keon recently made racist remarks regarding Asians during the commencement exercises on December 10, 2022. By mocking the languages spoken by Asians and Asian Americans, he continues a tradition of stigmatizing cultures and belittling Asian and Asian American peoples. We are not the butt of a racist joke. We condemn his behavior and join the call for Purdue University to hold Chancellor Keon publicly accountable.

Demands have come from within Purdue University for his resignation despite his effort at an apology. We share this open letter with its request for signatures, written by AAAS members and in conjunction with faculty at Purdue University. As the letter articulates, this is about more than singling out an individual act and involves addressing concerns about institutionalized racism against Asians and Asian Americans on campus. The letter will be delivered in early January, so signatures should be done by the end of December. We support those working towards racial justice at Purdue University Northwest.