Jane L. Eddy

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Mrs. Jane Lee Jackson Eddy died peacefully at home on March 12, 2015, with family and friends at her side. She is remembered with love, admiration and good humor by her family, and all who cared for her, as well as by the colleagues with whom she shared a long and fulfilling professional life.

Jane Lee Jackson was born on October 5th 1925. She grew up in Minneapolis, MN and graduated from Northrop Collegiate School (‘42.) She attended Vassar College where she majored in History. Upon graduation (‘45), she served as Assistant to the Alumnae Secretary. In this position, she traveled the nation speaking with alumnae and high school students about the benefits of education for women.

She then worked as Assistant to the Committee on Admission before leaving Vassar in 1950 to serve as Alumnae Director at Sarah Lawrence College. In 1953, she married Dr. Harrison P. Eddy III and began raising their family in New York City. During holidays and weekends they enjoyed time together and working outdoors at their property in Dutchess County, NY.

In 1956, Mrs. Eddy started working for Stephen and Audrey Currier as an assistant. Following the birth of her daughters, she served as an executive secretary for the Curriers at the Taconic Foundation. The Foundation played a key role supporting the early years of the American civil rights movement and was a leading innovator of philanthropic practice. In 1968, she became Executive Director. Under her leadership, Smokey House Center, an agricultural demonstration and youth employment program was established in Vermont.

During her tenure nearly 3,000 young people acquired academic and employability skills practicing sustainable farming and forestry, while working in small groups with skilled adults. Aspects of the Smokey House youth employment and educational program were replicated in inner city communities in New York and were distinguished by receiving funding from both Democratic and Republican administrations. Mrs. Eddy received the Distinguished Grantmaker Award in 1996 from the Council on Foundations. Those who worked with her recall her as a champion of equal opportunity and social justice throughout her life. In 1997, Mrs. Eddy retired to the Plains, VA, with her husband who retained a private practice. Mutual respect and love were ever present in their marriage of 61 years.

Mrs. Eddy was predeceased by Dr. Eddy, who died December 13, 2014. She is survived by her brother William Cable Jackson Jr. (CO), by her children William Eddy (NJ), Catherine Gallagher (VA), Susan Fargione (NY), along with their spouses, her grandchildren, nephews and nieces.

Memorial contributions may be made in her name to The Plains Volunteer Fire Co., P.O. Box 93, The Plains, VA, 20198. A private memorial will be held for Dr. and Mrs. Eddy at a later date.
Published in Rutland Herald on Mar. 27, 2015
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