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Jul. 18—JACKSONVILLE — It's official. Jacksonville State University's brand new Merrill Hall is open for business.
The university hosted a dedication event Monday afternoon for the newly constructed building after its summer Board of Trustees meeting.
JSU students faculty, staff members, Board of Trustee members, and even a few politicians attended the dedication ceremony, filling the event space on the second floor.
In 2018, a devastating tornado swept through Jacksonville, damaging much of the JSU campus. The old Merrill Hall building was completely destroyed.
Home of the College of Business and Industry, the new building boasts of sweeping light beaming from floor to ceiling windows, winding staircases and impressive technology labs.
The building is named after Hugh D. Merrill, of Anniston, "who was instrumental in helping to change the status of JSU from a teachers' college to a state college and ultimately to a respected university," the university's Director of Strategic Communications Buffy Lockette said in a recent press release.
Representing the Merrill family, Alabama Secretary of State John H. Merrill — cousin of Hugh Merrill — spoke at the dedication.
"This is an exciting time for our family but even more-so it's an exciting time for the university," Merrill said.
"This state-of-the-art facility is as fine a business complex as you will find anywhere in the nation. I'm very excited to be a part of this, and to have our family's name associated with it," he continued.
Contact Staff Writer Ashley Morrison at email@example.com. On Twitter @AshMorrison1105.