Donor Spotlight: Jane Davis

Between 30 years practicing law and being a mom to two kids, Jane Davis hasn’t had much free time over the past few decades. But now that she is retired and the kids are grown, she has more time to explore different passions and interests, and she is choosing to give some of that time to Clemson University, specifically on the Friends of the Libraries Board of Directors.

Davis grew up in a Clemson household, hearing stories about her dad’s time at Clemson. He graduated in 1949 with a degree in mechanical engineering, attending Clemson on the GI Bill following World War II. Davis grew up hearing about his time at Clemson, which inspired her to follow in his footsteps.

“He talked about watching the stadium being built, and we would visit campus and he would show me which buildings were there when he was there,” she said. “He talked a lot about how much it had changed his life, being able to go to college. And because it changed his life, it changed my life.”

Davis’ mother’s family had Clemson ties as well. They lived in the area, and all three of Davis’ uncles on that side attended Clemson. One of Davis’ older sisters attended Clemson as well, so when it came time for Davis to make her own college decision, it was a no-brainer.

Davis spent two years at Clemson in the pre-pharmacy program. Though she really wanted to graduate from Clemson, transferring to pharmacy school at the Medical University of South Carolina was a much more practical option, so that’s what she did. She initially wanted to go into pharmaceutical research, but when she learned more about what a career in research would entail, she decided that was not the path she wanted to take. Instead, she decided to attend law school at the University of South Carolina, after learning that law education with a medical background was a good combination for future career options.

Davis went on to become a partner at Nelson Mullins law firm and spent most of her career defending pharmaceutical and medical device companies in product liability cases.

Davis’ two children have carried on the family legacy of attending Clemson. Son Frank earned a degree in forest resource management in 2013, and daughter Molly earned a degree in biosystems engineering in 2018. Both Frank’s and Molly’s spouses graduated from Clemson, too.

Davis said she and her husband Harold started making donations to support the Libraries because they felt it would be a way to benefit all students.

“Because I didn’t have an attachment of any particular major or college, we decided to give to the Libraries because it was a way to help everyone, across the University,” she said. “Clemson is important to me. I love Clemson, and it has done a lot for my family, and I welcome the opportunity to give back.”

Davis has also gotten more involved in her community in the Charleston area. She has gotten more active in her church, First (Scots) Presbyterian in Charleston, and has joined the Mt. Pleasant Rotary Club and the Garden Club of Charleston.

Davis said she is looking forward to being even more involved as a member of the Friends of the Libraries Board.

“I’m thrilled to be able to be more involved and have a role, however small, in helping Clemson move forward in any way I can,” she said. “I’m just really happy about it.”