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Endowments aren’t just for colleges; they are for any institution to ensure the long term sustainability of their mission no matter the external forces or through any kind of storm. Your one time gift can help secure consistent delivery of a world-class center at the heart of Spartanburg.

In 2007, we celebrated the opening of Chapman Cultural Center our community’s crown jewel. She stands open every day welcoming more than 300,000 people every year. Entertaining, educating and celebrating all that we are as a community and honoring what makes us unique.

Your endowment gift will help us to grow and serve our organization annually. Your contribution will be designated to helping us develop, strengthen and promote the scope, excellence and educational role of the arts, humanities, and sciences with consistent delivery of a world-class cultural center. 

Chapman Cultural Center Operating Endowment

Purpose: To support annually the cost of ongoing operations for the center and the resident agencies of Chapman Cultural Center. With such support to help subsidize general routine operating costs, to include, but not limited to, subsidized rent for resident agencies, underwrite utility and routine maintenance costs and unexpected one-time operating costs Chapman Cultural Center or resident agencies.


Chapman Cultural Center Capital Endowment Fund

Purpose: To be devoted exclusively to future operating and capital needs of the Center

Ava Hughes Arts Education Fund

Purpose: Arts education, benefitting any age group, and specifically designated annually by Chapman Cultural Center’s Arts Education Committee and Arts Education Director with a spend rate of 5% annually.

Mary Wheeler Davis Scholarship Fund

Purpose: To honor the memory of Mary Wheeler Davis, an annual award is funded by the Mary Wheeler Davis Memorial Fund for the Promotion of the Arts, which was established in 1989. Davis was a native of Charleston and the wife of Dr. William McAlhany Davis. She was an enthusiastic community leader who was involved in many Spartanburg arts organizations.


When my wife died in 1988, the children (both in college) and I wanted to do something to perpetuate her memory and her dedication to the arts in Spartanburg, she was a pianist and organist in her own right and made sure the children were exposed to all aspects of the arts growing up.

She had been on the Arts Council and worked as a docent at the Art Center when it was on South Spring Street. We started a donor-advised fund at the Spartanburg County Foundation to award an annual scholarship to a high school student intending to pursue a career in some category of the arts, visual or performing. I don't believe there was any such type of opportunity through the Arts Council at the time.

The Foundation turned the judging over to the Arts Center which has evolved into the Chapman Cultural Center since then. (I may have the terms and times garbled but you get the idea). Since its inception, the award has grown a little in size and now has been given to two or three recipients occasionally.

The arts are important to our family and of course to the community at large as a broadening of one's appreciation of life and of culture in general. We hope this award will further that effort.

I am a retired pathologist who spent his whole career in Spartanburg, working at both of our hospitals. My daughter lives in New York and is a counselor for alcohol and addiction sufferers; my son is a professor of radiology at the Medical School of the University of Wisconsin in Madison.

We continue to contribute to the fund and support its purposes.

- W. Mac Davis