The in Williamsburg, Virginia, has announced two gifts totaling $12 million in support of its stadium renovation project.
Gifts of $6 million from alumni Hunter J. Smith and James W. and Frances G. McGlothlin will enable the college to proceed with renovations on 79-year-old Walter J. Zable Stadium, which was named after former W&M football star Walter J. Zable ('37, LL.D. '78) in 1990 and whose estate provided $10 million in 2012 in support of the $27 million project.
The plan for the updated stadium includes a new upper deck, luxury suites, and a new press box on the west side of the stadium, all featuring Flemish bond brickwork, slate roofs, and gables to create aesthetic continuity with the west and north ends of campus. The plan also specifies improved safety and accessibility measures, including wider aisles, renovation of existing and addition of new restroom facilities, improved lighting, an upgraded sound system, additional concession and retail locations, and a new entrance and ticketing location. Scheduled to begin early next year, the renovation is expected to be complete in time for the 2016 football season.
Smith and her late husband, Carl, are longtime William & Mary football fans and supporters of the school's academics and athletics. In 2013, Smith established the Hunter J. Smith Endowment for Freshman Seminars with a gift of $10 million. In addition to being active supporters of education and arts-related causes, the McGlothlins established the McGlothlin Leadership Forum at W&M’s Mason School of Business in 2011.
"Zable Stadium lies at the heart of William & Mary's campus. This renovation project provides a wonderful opportunity to ensure that this iconic landmark serves as a beacon of excellence befitting this great institution," said Jim McGlothlin, the founder, CEO, and chairman of the . "It is important to Fran and me that this project will both preserve the architectural integrity of the original structure while improving the football game experience for all."