The Willsons have been major contributors to the Boys and Girls Club in Albany.
Mrs. Willson has served as a University of Georgia Foundation Trustee since 1990, and she is currently active on the Audit Committee and Costa Rica Board. She also serves on the Board of Directors of the UGA Research Foundation. Jane was a major contributor to the search committee for Dr. Charles B. Knapp, President of UGA prior to Dr. Michael F. Adams.
World travelers and art patrons, Jane Willson and her late husband, Harry, have maintained a long interest in and support of the humanities and arts at UGA. They endowed the UGA Center for Humanities and Arts, which was renamed the Jane and Harry Willson Center for Humanities and Arts in 2005. The Willson Center has established the Harry and Jane Willson Professorship in Humanities and the Jane Willson Professorship in Arts.
The Willsons have also had a strong interest in education and international affairs. In 2001, they gave $1 million to the UGA Center for International Trade and Security to create an endowment that brings visiting scholars and international leaders to the University and provides international internship opportunities for students.
The Willsons are longtime supporters of UGA’s Honors Program. They have assisted the Foundation Fellows Program, which is part of the Honors Program, and Jane Willson has served on the Honors Program Advisory Board. Following Harry’s death in 2004, Jane donated $1 million to the UGA Honors Program to create the Willson International Honors Scholars Program to provide travel grants for Honors students to study abroad.
In 2007, Jane endowed a new fund to support students who take part in the Lamar Dodd School of Art’s Studies Abroad Program in Cortona, Italy. The Jane Willson Cortona Studies Abroad Fellowship is used to support students who might not otherwise have the chance to participate in the multifaceted program.
Jane is a member of the Annual Presidents Club and the Heritage Society, and has been a member of the UGA Partners Program.
In 2006, Jane received an honorary Doctor of Laws (LLD) degree from UGA.