East Texas Philanthropist Dies at 97 - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

11/6/07-Tyler

East Texas Philanthropist Dies at 97

An East Texas philanthropist has died at the age of 97. Tylerite Jack White passed away Saturday. Best known for his dedication to higher education, White was a benefactor of two East Texas colleges. Those who knew White say his generosity has left a legacy that will live on through the hundreds of students he's helped.

He's given millions of dollars, dozens of scholarships, and countless hours helping East Texas youth understand the importance of higher education.

'"They're a key family in why Tyler is known for being a generous, caring and giving community," says C.C. Baker who was Vice President of Development while White served on the Tyler Junior College Foundation Board.

Jack White and his wife, Dorothy Fay, not only gave more than 30 scholarships at TJC alone, they truly cared for its students, even going on a trip with band members and the Apache Belles to France.  

"What it meant to the Whites was we want to help young people, we want to help children and so they targeted primarily education," Baker said.

White served on the TJC Foundation board while C.C. Baker was there--a friend he's known for almost thirty years.

"It was through his philanthropy and his leadership, Chairman of the Foundation Board, and his personal giving that really launched TJC into one of the better endowed foundations at the community college level," Baker explains.

With education as his key focus, Jack White was also very much involved in giving to UT Tyler. At the Cowan Center, the lobby is named after him and his wife.

"We've had hundreds of students who have benefited from the many scholarships that he and his wife provided over many years and forever, they will be utilizing those scholarships and that's his legacy here," says Vice President of Development Jerre Iverson.

It's a legacy that Jack White left behind through his generosity and dedication--a legacy that is not only seen in the TJC administration building named after him, but through the students he helped.

Both Jack White and his late wife, Dorothy Fay, have been honored with several prestigious awards from organizations like United Way, and Prevent Blindness Texas. And aside from education, friends of the couple say they were also very much involved in their church.

Tracy Watler, Reporting tracy@kltv.com

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