“Can The Old South Rebrand Itself? Richmond Tries, With A Dynamic New Logo” ran the headline of a 2012 article in the monthly business magazine Fast Company, announcing the city’s new logo, RVA — shorthand for Richmond, Virginia. “The former seat of the Confederacy has been quietly transforming itself into a more creative place,” explained author Emily Badger. “Now it has the visual identity to match.” Badger went on to describe the challenge faced by students at the VCU Brandcenter, who in 2010 were charged with rebranding the city, “a task more daunting given that Richmond has long had a strong, deeply embedded identity. This is the former seat of the Confederacy, the heart of Colonial America, the place where you go to learn about battlefields and founding fathers and early U.S. history.”
The city’s rebranding efforts have paid off, so much so that the city’s newspaper of record recently published “a list of the nearly 350 accolades for the Richmond region,” including such plaudits as one of “Most Fun Cities in America” by Business Insider and one of Forbes.com’s “10 Coolest U.S. Cities to Visit in 2018.”
Copyright © 2019 University of Richmond Museums. This chapter first appeared in Growing up in Civil Rights Richmond: A Community Remembers.
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Browder, Laura. "RVA, Richmond, and the Geography of Memory." In Growing up in Civil Rights Richmond: A Community Remembers, edited by Elizabeth Schlatter and Ashley Kistler, 10-16. Richmond: University of Richmond Museums, 2019.