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Portland School Board Votes To Rename School After Maine Lawmaker And Civil Rights Activist

The Portland School Board has voted to rename one of its elementary schools for civil rights activist and former state legislator Gerald Talbot.

With Talbot and his family members in the audience, the school board unanimously supported changing the name of the district's Riverton Elementary School to the Gerald E. Talbot Community School. Talbot was the state's first African American legislator and the founding president of the Portland chapter of the NAACP.

Portland School Board Chair Roberto Rodriguez says that recognizing Talbot sends an important message about the values of the district.

“What better message can we send as a district of how much we value diversity than by recognizing one of the greatest leaders in this state, that happens to be an African American?”

The district expects to formally unveil the new name by this fall.