Benefactor Mary Virginia Terry and her late husband Herman Terry have a long record of support of UGA and the college that bears their name. In 1990, the couple gave the business school $6 million, at the time the largest individual gift in university history. That gift, along with subsequent gifts, has funded faculty chairs, scholarships, summer research support and facility upgrades to the Terry College's Executive Education Center in Atlanta.
The couple also made gifts to support other faculty chairs and the university's general scholarship fund. Mrs. Terry also has endowed a faculty chair in UGA's College of Pharmacy in honor of her husband's father, who was a pharmacist, and she gave the university $300,000 to support research and treatment of asthma and other respiratory illnesses, which were contributing factors in Herman Terry's death in 1998.
Mrs. Terry has long been a major supporter of education, children's charities and the arts. She has been a trustee of Jacksonville University and served on the boards of the Wolfson Children's Hospital, the Children's Home Society, the Salvation Army, the Sulzbacher Center for the Homeless and the Jacksonville Symphony. In 2002, she received the Blue Key Service Award from the UGA chapter of Blue Key National Honor Society.
"Mary Virginia Terry serves as a wonderful role model for our students — strong, confident and compassionate," said Robert T. Sumichrast, dean of the Terry College. "Her commitment and devotion to helping others is commendable — from her work on several charitable boards in Jacksonville to her ongoing support of students in the Terry College.