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November 2020

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Santa Clara University Resigns from Silicon Valley Organization

SCU has cut ties with Silicon Valley Organization over racist imagery in an election attack ad.

SANTA CLARA, Calif., Nov. 4, 2020— Santa Clara University on Oct. 28 cut its ties with the Silicon Valley Organization (SVO) and the SVO Foundation, after learning of racist imagery utilized by SVO’s Political Action Committee and others, as part of an election “attack ad.”  SVO, formerly known as the Silicon Valley Chamber of Commerce, is the largest business advocacy group in the Bay Area, representing over 1200 businesses from technology behemoths to local nonprofits.

Santa Clara University Vice President of University Relations Jim Lyons had served for six years on the board of SVO. After a similar attack ad two years ago, Lyons objected and was told that the ad “was an aberration and would never be allowed to happen again,” Lyons wrote in an email to SVO leadership. That it recurred is “something that both the University and I can no longer accept or tolerate,” he wrote.

Santa Clara University has stated that no work is more important than its own efforts to realize a more inclusive, welcoming and safe campus where all are respected and valued. The fear-based and divisive actions of SVO’s PAC are diametrically opposed to such efforts, so SCU joined the dozens of other businesses and nonprofits cutting ties with SVO.

About Santa Clara University
Santa Clara University is a private Jesuit, Catholic University in the epicenter of Silicon Valley, infusing ethics and social consciousness into a rigorous cross-disciplinary education for its nearly 9,000 undergraduate and graduate students.  

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