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William & Mary Hall gets new name after couple’s historic donation

William & Mary Hall will now be known as Kaplan Arena. (PHOTO: Stephen Salpukas)

William & Mary Hall will now be known as Kaplan Arena. (PHOTO: Stephen Salpukas)

WILLIAMSBURG, Va. — William & Mary Hall will be renamed Kaplan Arena following the largest donation in the history of William and Mary’s Athletics Department. Alumnae Jane and Jim Kaplan’s donation was north of $20 million, according to the university.

“From scholarships to the basketball program, the Muscarelle Museum of Art and beyond, the Tribe community has benefited tremendously from the outpouring of support from the Kaplans over the years,” William & Mary President Taylor Reveley said. “It is quite fitting that the entire hall, which houses the 8,600-seat Kaplan Arena, now fully becomes their namesake. Jane and Jim’s generosity is truly making a difference, and we are most grateful.”

Jim Kaplan, Chairman and CEO of Cornell Dubilier Electronics, in Liberty, South Carolina, played basketball for William and Mary in the 1950.

The Board of Visitors approved a measure to change the name of William & Mary Hall to Kaplan Arena, in honor of Jane Thompson Kaplan ’56 and Jim Kaplan ’57. (PHOTO: William and Mary)

The Board of Visitors approved a measure to change the name of William & Mary Hall to Kaplan Arena, in honor of Jane Thompson Kaplan ’56 and Jim Kaplan ’57. (PHOTO: William and Mary)

“I cannot think of a more appropriate name on the building the athletics department calls home than Kaplan,” Tribe Athletics Director Terry Driscoll said. “Jane and Jim were among the first people I got to know when I first arrived to Williamsburg 20 years ago and in that time, I have not met more dedicated fans or better and more caring people.”

In addition to basketball scholarships, the donation will help pay for an expansion of the Muscarelle Museum of Art.

“Jim and Jane’s gift will transform one of the foundational origins of the College, the arts, and enable the Muscarelle to expand its world-class exhibitions and programs,” Aaron DeGroft, director of the Muscarelle Museum of Art, added.

“Most everything that I have today — my wonderful family, my knowledge, my career — stems from this place,” Jim Kaplan said about William and Mary. “I cannot think of a better reason to give back to the university that made me who I am today.”