ST. LOUIS– The Veiled Prophet Organization is apologizing for its controversial past after actress Ellie Kemper called the group “unquestionable racist” in an Instagram post. This all comes after the St. Louis native was caught in a Twitter firestorm over her ties to the organization.
The statement says after reflection, the Veiled Prophet (VP) Organization acknowledges its past and recognizes the criticism levied its way. The group also apologized for the actions and images from its history.
The Veiled Prophet Organization became the center of attention recently after Ellie Kemper fans found a 2014 article in The Atlantic on the group. They then learned about Kemper’s connection as the queen of the VP Ball in 1999. Fans quickly took to Twitter to comment.
Yesterday, she released a statement on Instagram apologizing to the people she disappointed. She also said she was not aware of the group’s history at the time, but ignorance is no excuse.
The VP Organization’s statement also said, “our lack of cultural awareness was and is wrong. We are committed to change, allowing our actions to match the organization we are today.”
Here is the group’s entire statement:
Upon reflection, the Veiled Prophet Organization acknowledges our past and recognizes the criticism levied our way. We sincerely apologize for the actions and images from our history. Additionally, our lack of cultural awareness was and is wrong. We are committed to change, allowing our actions to match the organization we are today.
The VP Organization of today categorically rejects racism, in any form. Today’s VP is committed to diversity and equity in our membership, community service initiatives and support for the region. Our hope is that moving forward, the community sees us for who we are today and together we can move this region forward for everyone.
We are, and always will be committed to the success of the region and making St Louis a better place to live for all.Veiled Prophets Organization
The Post-Dispatch also wrote an article in 2019 titled: Veiled Prophet: Symbol of wealth, power, and to some, racism. It reported the ball was met with protests in the 1970s and in recent years as well. It also had to move from a city-owned auditorium over allegations of racism. The organization didn’t include any black men until 1979.