Janice Annette Willis Taylor, 83, died on January 26, 2019 in Little Rock.
She was born November 4, 1935, at Sand Springs, Oklahoma. She was the daughter of Cora Pauline Athens Willis and Walter Wade Willis, Jr. She was preceded in death by both parents.
She is survived by her husband, Dr. Fred James Taylor of Little Rock; two sons, Gregory Lyle Taylor and wife, Danielle O’Neill Taylor of Little Rock and Bradley Clark Taylor of Hot Springs; three grandchildren, Andrew Harrison Taylor, Jackson Thomas Taylor (Greg’s) and Lindsey Kay Taylor (daughter of Brad and Marsha) of Little Rock; two sisters of Bartlesville, Oklahoma, Phyllis Ann Willis and Willa Jeane Curnutt and her husband, Ronald Clark Curnutt; nieces and nephews, Dana Curnutt Willis of Copan, Oklahoma, Mindy Curnutt Mansfield of Bartlesville, Oklahoma, Kayla Taylor of Dallas, Texas, Craig Taylor of Muldrow, Oklahoma, Leland Taylor of Midwest City, Oklahoma; and David Mark Mohney.
She was a 1953 graduate of Sand Springs High School where she was active in drama and speech. She received a BA degree in English and Speech/Language Pathology and a Master of Education from Northeastern State University. She also attended Anderson College, the University of Oklahoma, the University of Northern Colorado, and the University of Arkansas at Monticello in Monticello, Arkansas.
She was active in educating young people and in the arts. She was appointed by Arkansas governors Clinton, Tucker, and Beebe to serve 20 years on the Arkansas Art Council. She was the founding president of the North Arkansas Symphony Guild, and was a long-time board member of the Southeast Arkansas Concert Association. She was also a founding volunteer at the Clinton Presidential Center, serving 10 years.
From 1977-2004, her husband Fred served as the Chancellor of the University of Arkansas at Monticello where she helped him host students, alumni, and dignitaries from across the state, the nation, and the world. For her support of the arts she was recognized with the creation of the Janice A. Taylor Music Award given annually to an outstanding music student.
Along with Chancellor Taylor, Janice was privileged to be a member of two American Association of State Colleges and Universities delegations to both Nationalist China and the Republic of China. She was thankful to have had the opportunities to travel to more than 20 countries in her lifetime including a very special 50th wedding anniversary trip to Botswana, South Africa.
A Memorial service will be held on Saturday, February 2, at 1:30 p.m. at the Second Presbyterian Church, 600 Pleasant Valley Drive, in Little Rock.
Memorials may be made to the Fred and Janice Taylor Endowed Scholarship in Debate and Forensics at the University of Arkansas at Monticello, 346 University Court, Monticello, AR 71655, Mount Holly Cemetery Association, P.O. Box 250118, Little Rock, AR 72225, or the Second Presbyterian Church, 600 Pleasant Valley Drive, Little Rock, AR 72227.