Princeton alum Kwanza Jones has reached a history-making achievement at the university. The artist and entrepreneur is now the first Black woman to have a building named after her in Princeton’s 275-year history.
The honor came after the 1993 graduate and her husband José E. Feliciano, also a Princeton graduate, honored their alma mater with a donation of $20 million. Feliciano also had a building named after him, making him the first Latino donor to receive that recognition.
“We see this donation as a symbol of unwavering commitment. It also serves as a testament that people of color are an integral part of this institution and are actively involved in promoting anti-racism, diversity, and inclusion,” Jones said in a news release about her and Feliciano’s donation to the university.
Jones and Feliciano are founders of the Kwanza Jones & José E. Feliciano Initiative, an investment organization established in 2014.
At a ribbon cutting ceremony for the newly named dorms Princeton University President Christopher Eisgruber commented on the historic nature of the event. According to The Griot, Eisgruber says the dorms show “what it means to belong.” He also called the duo “two very special members of the Princeton community.”
Kwanza Jones Hall is located at Princeton’s New College West.
“As a proud Princetonian, it means so much to both of us that our names will forever be rooted in this prestigious institution that taught us the power of perseverance and the importance of pushing beyond boundaries,” Jones said in an Instagram post celebrating her honor. “Thank you to the staff, faculty, students and fellow alumni’s of Princeton for helping us to celebrate this historical moment, and to all who have supported us throughout our journey.”