Jim W Wilson III Plaque

The University of Alabama held a ceremony on Saturday, April 13, to unveil a new plaque on the southern entrance of Bryant-Denny Stadium in recognition of late trustee James “Jim” Winfrey Wilson III. The University of Alabama System Board of Trustees passed a resolution in November 2023 commissioning a plaque in honor of Wilson’s extraordinary service to the Board of Trustees, the UA System and the entire state.

“Jim Wilson lived a big life – he had a big heart, big vision, and big influence on the Board of Trustees and each of the UA System institutions,” said UA System Board of Trustees President pro tempore Scott Phelps. “While Jim’s larger-than-life presence will never be forgotten by those who knew him, this plaque serves to introduce Jim to future generations of students and fans so they too can understand and appreciate his service to the UA System and his lasting legacy. Jim was an incredible trustee, a beloved husband, an adored father, and a genuine friend to all.”

A native of Montgomery and proud UA graduate, Wilson was elected to the Board of Trustees in 2003 and held numerous significant leadership positions throughout his twenty-year tenure, including serving as chair of the UAB Health System Authority. With a relentless passion for enhancing education and improving healthcare in Alabama, Wilson made an indelible impact on the entire University of Alabama System and the state.

“Jim Wilson was a remarkable individual whose impact on The University of Alabama is truly immeasurable,” said UA President Stuart R. Bell. “Jim’s leadership was instrumental in bringing numerous building projects to life across the UA System, and his hands helped shape the beautiful campus for which The University of Alabama is known today. With an unwavering love for the University, Jim embodied the spirit of leadership and was a true champion for The University of Alabama.”

An accomplished real estate developer and investor, Wilson served as chairman of the Physical Properties Committee for six years, overseeing the construction of dozens of buildings that furthered the UA System’s mission of teaching, research and service and enhanced the landscape of its campuses. He used his extensive real estate expertise to help lead the transformation of the southwest corner of UA’s campus, spearheading major renovations to Bryant-Denny Stadium and the construction of a new Julia Tutwiler Hall with a greenspace quad.

“Jim was a trusted friend who provided wise counsel, and plentiful laughter, while making a monumental impact on the University through his service and support,” said UA Director of Athletics Greg Byrne. “When I came to Alabama, it was Jim who helped me understand the underlying history, passion and tradition of this University. He deeply loved UA, Alabama Athletics, and especially Alabama Football, so it is especially fitting to have him permanently recognized at Bryant-Denny Stadium.”

As a life-long Crimson Tide fan, Wilson was an avid supporter of Alabama Athletics and athletics programs across the UA System. He chaired the Athletics Committee and served on the Crimson Tide Foundation Board of Directors for many years, playing an instrumental role in elevating UA’s athletics programs and facilities during a period of tremendous growth and success.

“There wasn’t a greater supporter of the football program than Jim Wilson, who was a kindhearted leader and a great friend, which is something that means a lot to me,” said former UA head football coach Nick Saban. “One of the things that I have always benefited from as a leader is to be around other great leaders and learn from them, and I certainly learned a lot from Jim. His positive energy and enthusiasm were infectious – something we could probably all benefit from catching – and he truly cared about others. I hope this plaque will remind all those who see it of the example Jim set and inspire them to carry on his legacy for years to come.”

The plaque was unveiled by Wilson’s family members and is located at Gate 32 of Bryant-Denny Stadium.

About the University of Alabama System

Committed to excellence in teaching, research, and service, the University of Alabama System includes three doctoral research institutions – UA, UAB, and UAH – and the world-class UAB Health System. The UA System educates more Alabamians than any other university system and provides transformational research in areas ranging from aerospace to biomedicine to transportation. Its hospitals and clinics care for millions of patients annually and serve people in every county of Alabama. As one of the largest employers in the state, the overall economic impact of the University of Alabama System exceeds $15 billion a year.