Majority of voters want to remove ‘Stapleton’ from neighborhood organization name, but effort falls short

The attempt to change the name of Stapleton United Neighbors fell short by 38 votes.

(Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite)

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Stapleton residents gather for a community meeting and a vote on whether to rename "Stapleton United Neighbors" to "Central Park United Neighbors," May 15, 2018. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite)

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Stapleton residents gather for a community meeting and a vote on whether to rename "Stapleton United Neighbors" to "Central Park United Neighbors," May 15, 2018. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite)

Stapleton United Neighbors will keep its name after a vote to change its name failed to get enough votes trigger the change, the group said Friday.

According to a SUN email sent Friday night, 452 valid ballots were collected during Tuesday’s vote. The question was simple: Should SUN change its name to Central Park United Neighbors? A majority of respondents — 58 percent, or 261 votes— voted to change the name, while 42 percent (189 votes) said no.

SUN bylaws mandated a vote to change the name would require a 66 percent majority. Only Stapleton residents were eligible to vote. The email said SUN’s seven board members validated the ballots.

“Through the process leading up to the Tuesday vote, and with a strong turnout at the annual Community Forum, the community continues to demonstrate a strong passion for social equity,” Friday’s email, sent by SUN’s Board, said. “SUN remains dedicated to its purpose of providing a working forum for the residents of the Stapleton neighborhood to participate in pursuing the vision of this community by creating, developing, and fostering a vibrant urban community dedicated to social equity, environmental responsibility, and economic opportunity”

The voting was prompted by community concerns over the name’s connection to former Denver Mayor Benjamin F. Stapleton, who was a member of the Ku Klux Klan. For community members who have advocated for removing the name from the neighborhood altogether, the vote was seen as a major test.

The voting took place throughout Tuesday’s Annual Community Forum, a meeting providing community updates. Residents were allowed to stop by and vote without having to stay for the duration of the meeting, which many did. Voting took place between 6 p.m. and about 8:35 p.m.