FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. - Alumnus and Razorback supporter Boyce Billingsley will participate in the "A" Walk of Honor on Saturday prior to Arkansas' football game against Kentucky at Donald W. Reynolds Razorback Stadium.
Boyce, and her late husband George, graduated from the University of Arkansas in the late 1950s and have been benefactors of their alma mater and the Razorback program ever since.
"It is hard to measure the tremendous success of the University of Arkansas and the Razorback program without taking into account the loyal and generous support of the Billingsleys," Vice Chancellor and Director of Athletics Jeff Long said. "The Billingsleys' active support for more than a half century has made a difference in the lives of countless University of Arkansas students, including thousands of Razorback student-athletes. We are grateful for their contributions to the success of our program, our University and many other worthy ventures throughout the state. We are honored to recognize Boyce and the entire Billingsley family with the 'A' Walk of Honor."
The Billingsleys are longtime supporters of Razorback Athletics and members of the Razorback Foundation. They made a signature gift for the construction of the George M. Billingsley Tennis Center, a premier facility that includes six indoor courts, 10 outdoor courts and a suite/club level overlooking both competition venues. The project also included the addition of chairback seating, a player lounge, a plaza entry, a scoreboard for the outdoor courts and elevated stadium seating for both the indoor and outdoor courts.
They also made major gifts for the renovation and expansion of Donald W. Reynolds Razorback Stadium, an endowment fund, the Bev Lewis Center and Bogle Park. George Billingsley founded the Northwest Arkansas Razorback Club in the 1960s. One of the most active in the state, the club was later renamed in his honor. In 2002, the Billingsleys were honored with the University of Arkansas Sports Hall of Honor Distinguished Service Award.
Through the years, the family has also made significant contributions to the Sam M. Walton College of Business, the College of Education and Health Professions, the College of Engineering, the Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences, the University Libraries and the Chancellor's Scholarship programs. In addition, they have designated funds for the endowment fund of the Arkansas Children's Hospital in Little Rock, Ark., the restoration and renovation of Old Main and the establishment of a program for international music preservation in the Fulbright College. In recognition of their support, the home of the music department was renamed the George and Boyce Billingsley Music Building.
The Billingsleys were charter members of the Chancellor's Society and the Towers of Old Main. They were awarded the Chancellor's Medal in 2005. They also served on the Campaign for the Twenty-First Century Steering Committee, a campaign that raised more than $1 billion for the University of Arkansas. Mr. Billingsley also served as a member of the UA's Executive Committee.
"Running through the A" is one of the Razorbacks' most storied football traditions. While "Running through the A" is a tradition reserved only for members of the Razorback football team, Razorback Athletics created a program to honor those individuals or groups who have played a significant role in the support of Razorback Athletics.
Honorees are invited to participate in this unique pre-game experience and are recognized on the video board and over the public address system as they walk through the "A" formed by the Razorback Marching Band. After completing the walk, honorees help complete the "A" before welcoming Coach John L. Smith and the Arkansas Razorback football team on the field just prior to kickoff. Honorees will also be inducted into the "A" Walk of Honor Hall of Fame.
Previous honorees have included members of the Donald W. Reynolds Foundation, former Arkansas coach and athletic director Frank Broyles, the Willard and Pat Walker family, Jim Lindsey, Bob and Marilyn Bogle and the Jennings Osborne family.
For more information regarding Razorback Football or University of Arkansas athletics, please visit ArkansasRazorbacks.com.