Janet Thompson, otherwise known as Ack to her friends and family, made two extraordinary gifts to UNC Horizons in memory of her late husband, Jim.

When talking about her family and her beloved Jim, Ack’s eyes sparkle, and her entire face lights up.  Ack and “her honey” met on a blind date, got married four months later and shared 54 blessed years together.

Jim’s childhood was challenging; his father was an alcoholic and, at eight years old, he was forced to live with various family members when his parents divorced. Although Jim failed second grade and never received a good education, he was given the opportunity to attend Guildford College. He understood the transformational impact of education. And, because he worked hard to provide for his family, he ensured a proper education for his children. Also, making sure that his grandchildren and their children have strong educational opportunities was a fundamental priority.

Ack’s decision to establish The James Thompson Scholarship Fund for Academic Achievement, an endowed gift to enable the women at Horizons to pursue their education, is a testament to Jim’s legacy.

According to Ack’s son, Jim, “…he (his father) worked hard, but work was never more important than family…”.  Family is what motivated Ack to make a second endowed gift: The Janet (Ack) and Jim (Paupaw) Thompson Play Therapy Room because that’s where the women are equipped with parenting skills and the bond between mother and child is fostered and nurtured.

If you are interested in contributing to The James Thompson Scholarship Fund for Academic Achievement, click here. For additional information about naming opportunities, please contact Jodie Gisser, jodie_gisser@med.unc.edu or call 919-843-9898.