The Right Idea at the Right Time

Carolina basketball fans notice every move Head Coach Roy Williams ’72, ’73 (M.A.T.) makes — from donning retro Air Jordans in a game against Duke to uttering his latest “Roy-ism” to dancing in the locker room after a hard-won victory. 

But Coach Williams’ followers may not know about the many generous donations he and Wanda Williams ’72 have made to scholarship programs and non-revenue sports over the years. That includes the couple’s $600,000 gift that funded scholarships for spring-sports seniors whose seasons were cut short by the pandemic. 

For the most part, the Williamses have preferred to keep their philanthropic endeavors quiet, to support without fanfare the people and programs they hold dear. Now, to meet the urgency of the moment, Coach Williams and Wanda have made their largest one-time gift to Carolina: $3 million to support scholarships for athletes, Carolina Covenant Scholars and Chancellor’s Science Scholars. And this time, they agreed announcing the news of their generosity would hopefully inspire others to help, as well. 

“The whole world is in a tough situation right now — financially, health wise, everything you can think about. And we are in a position to be able to do something about it. It just seemed like it was the right idea at the right time,” said Coach Williams. “We hope others might be encouraged to do some things as well.” 

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