Mary Washington College in Virginia will name its student center for James Farmer, the civil rights leader who led the first Freedom Ride through the South and founded the Congress of Racial Equality.

A college board voted unanimously Saturday to put Farmer's name on the college's multicultural center, which houses such organizations as the black, Asian and Jewish student associations.Farmer organized the first lunch counter sit-in in Chicago in 1942, and he led the first Freedom Ride through the South in 1961 to desegregate interstate busing.

Farmer, who began teaching history at Mary Washington in Fredericksburg, Va., in 1985, received the Presidential Medal of Freedom from President Clinton last month.