SUNY Plaza “Shines the Light” for Domestic Violence Awareness Month

September 30, 2015

Albany – The historic State University of New York Plaza building on Broadway in downtown Albany will again be lit with purple lights for the month of October, as part of the NYS Office for the Prevention of Domestic Violence (OPDV) "Shine the Light on Domestic Violence" campaign.

"We are proud to illuminate the System Administration building in purple and lend SUNY's support to this important state-wide campaign that increases public awareness about the dangers of domestic violence and encourage victims to seek support," said SUNY Chancellor Nancy L. Zimpher. "SUNY campuses throughout New York State will also 'Shine the Light' this month as we take a united stand against domestic violence."

Help is available for all victims of domestic abuse. The NYS Domestic and Sexual Abuse Hotline (800-942-6906) responds to and is a resource for victims of domestic and sexual violence, concerned others and professionals, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The hotline provides trained counselors who respond to a variety of service needs, including: crisis intervention, supportive counseling, information and referral services, and technical support to providers. 

This is OPDV's eighth year to "Shine the Light on Domestic Violence" by turning the State purple. In the past, landmarks such as Niagara Falls, the Empire State Building, bridges, colleges, and statues were illuminated purple for a day, a week, or the entire month. In addition, main streets and public vehicles have been adorned with purple flags, and employees, hospital staff, and small business-owners have dressed in purple or worn purple ribbons.

OPDV has also designated Oct. 21 as the date to "Turn the State Purple," and is encouraging all New Yorkers to wear purple that day. 

About SUNY Plaza
The SUNY System Administration building, formerly occupied by Delaware & Hudson Railroad, was completed between 1915 and 1917, replacing a large railroad yard, trains, and bridge with the more attractive plaza and surrounding buildings that exist today. SUNY moved into the main building in 1978 and into what is known as the Federal Building in 1980.

To recognize the building's upcoming centennial anniversary, Chancellor Zimpher will kick off a year-long series of events Oct. 19 at 10:30 a.m., beginning with a re-opening of the renovated front lawn. In addition to creating a more welcoming landscape and gathering place for the downtown Albany community, this year's renovation included needed repairs to existing drainage, underground utilities, lighting, and the sprinkler system, most of which had not been updated since the 1970s. The grounds will also include energy-efficient walkway lighting and a circular vehicle entrance, a return to the space’s original design.


About the State University of New York
The State University of New York is the largest comprehensive system of higher education in the United States, and more than 95 percent of all New Yorkers live within 30 miles of any one of SUNY’s 64 colleges and universities. Across the system, SUNY has four academic health centers, five hospitals, four medical schools, two dental schools, a law school, the country’s oldest school of maritime, the state’s only college of optometry, and manages one US Department of Energy National Laboratory. In total, SUNY serves about 1.4 million students amongst its entire portfolio of credit- and non-credit-bearing courses and programs, continuing education, and community outreach programs. SUNY oversees nearly a quarter of academic research in New York. Research expenditures system-wide are nearly $1.1 billion in fiscal year 2023, including significant contributions from students and faculty. There are more than three million SUNY alumni worldwide, and one in three New Yorkers with a college degree is a SUNY alum. To learn more about how SUNY creates opportunities, visit

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Holly Liapis
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