Donna Axum Whitworth

Founding Member of Texas Women for the Arts
January 3, 1942 – November 4, 2018

Donna served as a member of the University of Arkansas Chancellor’s Advisory Board and served on the Steering Committee of the Campaign for the 21st Century, which raised $1.46 billion. Heavily involved in the arts on the local, state and national levels, Donna was Past Chairman of the Texas Cultural Trust and served at the Chair Emeritus for the Trust’s Texas Women for the Arts – a giving circle program Donna created in her capacity as Board Chair. In 1994, Donna received a Presidential Appointment from President Bill Clinton to the President’s Advisory Committee for the Arts at the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C. She served as Special Events Chair on the Executive Committee. In 2001, Donna was elected to the National Committee for the Performing Arts, where she served as Chair of the Executive Committee. In Fort Worth, Donna was a member of the Van Cliburn Foundation’s Board of Directors, the Fort Worth Symphony’s Executive Committee and the Texas Christian University College of Fine Arts Advisory Board. Donna served as President of Imagination Celebration, a Kennedy Center program that has served the public schools in Fort Worth for over 20 years. In 2004, Donna was the first Miss America elected to the Miss America Board of Directors. She served on the Executive Committee as 1st Vice Chair, Co-Chair of the Judges Committee and Co-Chair of the State License Committee. The Miss America Organization is the largest provider of college scholarships and assistance in the world. Donna passed away on November 4, 2018 in Fort Worth where she and her husband, Bryan, made their home. She is survived by their five children and ten grandchildren.

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