William & Mary alumnus and former university Rector Henry C. Wolf ’64, J.D. ’66 and his wife, Dixie Davis Wolf, have given $3 million to establish the 1779 Scholars Fund for student scholarships at William & Mary Law School and to create The Wolf Gallery, a venue devoted to William & Mary’s history at the university’s Muscarelle Museum of Art. The Wolfs are residents of Virginia Beach and Williamsburg, Va. The gift was announced Thursday evening at an event in the university’s historic Wren Building.
“We are so very grateful, once again, to Hank and Dixie Wolf for their generosity and friendship over the years,” said William & Mary President Taylor Reveley. “Their gift celebrates the university’s storied place in our nation’s history. It will fund student scholarships at William & Mary Law School, the nation’s oldest, established by Thomas Jefferson in 1779, and it will provide a venue in William & Mary’s Muscarelle Museum to display university artifacts, including many that illustrate William & Mary’s impact on America.”
In a joint statement, the Wolfs said that they were “delighted to make this gift to the Law School at William & Mary to establish the 1779 Scholars Fund, which will serve to provide financial support for students at the Law School and make it possible for deserving law students to have access to an outstanding legal education.” Dixie Davis Wolf added, “Our gift to the Muscarelle Museum of Art is intended to provide a source of funds that will help to facilitate the construction of new facilities for a very special museum in the midst of our community.”
Henry C. Wolf received a bachelor's degree in economics in 1964 from the university and in 1966 received his law degree from William & Mary Law School. Wolf was first appointed to the Board of Visitors -- William & Mary's governing body – in 2003, and was reappointed in 2007. He was vice rector for two years, and then served a two-year term as rector until July 2011. The William & Mary Alumni Association recognized Dixie Davis Wolf as an honorary alumna in 2010, an honor given to select individuals who have “demonstrated a lasting commitment and genuine affinity for the College.” A graduate of the University of New Orleans, she is a trustee of The College of William & Mary Foundation and a former trustee of the Muscarelle Museum of Art.
William & Mary Law School Dean Davison M. Douglas applauded the Wolfs’ vision in establishing the endowment, and said that the first law students who will receive scholarships made possible by the fund would be designated as Wolf Scholars.
“The creation of the Wolf Scholars program will be of enormous benefit to the Law School,” Douglas said. “This endowment will help us attract those students who have demonstrated tremendous academic excellence, as well as a commitment to the greater good. Once again, Hank and Dixie have stepped up to help the Law School fulfill its historic mission of educating citizen lawyers who are prepared both to lead and to serve.”
In 2006, Wolf was inducted as an honorary member of the Order of the Coif, a national honor society for law graduates that recognizes intellectual and professional accomplishment. In 2007, the law school named its renovated and expanded, state-of-the-art law library as the Wolf Law Library, in recognition of a gift made by the Wolfs in honor of Anne Wolf.
Aaron H. De Groft, director of the Muscarelle Museum, said that the gift to the gallery reflected Mrs. Wolf’s great enthusiasm and support for the arts. “The portion of the Wolfs’ gift that will benefit the museum is a tremendous infusion of support for our goal to achieve a larger, expanded facility,” he said. He added that the new venue will be named the Wolf Gallery of the History of the College of William & Mary and will showcase the university’s role in American history. Among the interesting objects that may go on initial display is a trophy given to the university by Amelia Earhart to acknowledge the first Flying Club.
Following a career that spanned more than 34 years at Norfolk Southern Corporation, Henry C. Wolf retired in 2007 as the company's vice chairman, having also served for 14 years as its chief financial officer. Prior to joining Norfolk Southern in 1973, he was a law clerk for the United States Tax Court and an attorney for the Internal Revenue Service. He also served four years in the U.S. Army, attaining the rank of captain in the Judge Advocate General's Corps. Wolf is a member of the board of AGL Resources, Inc., and a trustee of the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation. He is a former member of the board of Hertz Global Holdings, an emeritus member of the Virginia Institute of Marine Science Council, and a former member of the Board of Visitors at Eastern Virginia Medical School. Dixie Davis Wolf worked as an educator in the Maryland and Virginia public schools. She was founding member of the Civic Leadership Institute of Hampton Roads, is an emeritus member of the Hampton Roads Board of Governors of the Virginia Opera, and is a former member and chair of the Board of Trustees of the Chrysler Museum of Art.
In addition to his William & Mary degrees, Henry C. Wolf also holds an M.B.A. from Louisiana State University and a Master of Laws (LL.M.) degree from Georgetown University Law Center. In 1992, he attended the Harvard Advanced Management Program.
William & Mary Law School was founded by Thomas Jefferson in 1779 to train leaders for the new nation. Now in its third century, America’s oldest law school continues its historic mission of educating citizen lawyers who are prepared both to lead and to serve.
William & Mary’s Muscarelle Museum of Art serves as a resource for the university and community, as a working laboratory for students and faculty and as a platform for visiting exhibitions and the museum’s own collection.