Ada Belle Winthrop-King
Ada Belle "Pat" Winthrop-King was a
scholar, a bilingual foreign language teacher, a stock
market wizard and a woman devoted to her family and
Florida State University. She was committed to helping
students enrich themselves and meet their goals.
Born in 1900 in the small town of Lyons,
Georgia, Winthrop-King came to Tallahassee in 1928 to
teach Spanish and French at Florida State College for
Women. She taught at two different times until 1938.
After earning a master's degree at Vanderbilt University,
she went to Paris on a scholarship and studied at the
Sorbonne. She went back every year after that, falling
in love with the city during one of its most exciting
periods of art and literature.
Along with her love of FSU, her devotion to the romantic
city is the reason she established the Ada Belle Winthrop-King
Endowed Memorial Fund to be used in FSU's Department
of Modern Languages and Linguistics in the College of
Arts and Sciences. She gave the university $8 million
for the endowment before her death and a state match
brings the total to $16 million. Most of the endowment
is used for student
scholarships so others may experience France much
as Winthrop-King did almost 70 years ago. Her gift also
included a $1 million endowment for the Appleton Museum
of Art in the School of Visual Arts and Dance in Ocala.
In July 1991, she received an honorary doctorate of
humane letters from FSU. In 1989, the French government
bestowed on her the rank of Chevalier des Arts et des
Lettres, one of the most prestigious honors given by
the French government to a foreign citizen.