Cultivating Life's Beauty

John and Lois Crowe UC Davis

John and Lois Crowe have a passion for cultivating the beautiful, simple things that enrich one’s life and the life of the UC Davis community.

Their love of the arts started with small events in their childhood — for John, hearing the North Carolina Symphony play in his rural North Carolina community when he was 8 years old; for Lois, taking a school bus trip as a girl to downtown Los Angeles to see children’s programs performed by the Los Angeles Philharmonic.

Their love of each other began early in their scientific careers at UC Davis. Lois was a graduate student on campus when John joined the faculty and moved into the lab next door. From there grew a marriage, and a decades-long research collaboration in molecular and cellular biology. Over many years, John and Lois have cultivated an inspiring philanthropic impact on UC Davis, the institution where they spent their careers and to which they have given so much of their time.

Music is not only a pleasure, say the Crowes, but a guide to spiritual and intellectual fulfillment. John and Lois have extended the chance for this fulfillment to untold others through their support of the Robert Mondavi Center at UC Davis. Their generosity has helped to create a Young Artists Competition, part of the Mondavi Center’s Young Artists Program. The competition, which is growing each year, highlights the talents of young classical musicians who range from elementary school to college age.

The Crowes’ gift for transforming the everyday into something beautiful can be seen in the Lois Crowe Patio at the UC Davis Arboretum, which was renovated through their generosity in 2007 and now offers a Mediterranean oasis for our community.

In addition to strengthening the aesthetic beauty of our campus and enriching the arts at UC Davis, the Crowes are committed to expanding educational opportunities to more students.

“Education has always been a pleasure,” Lois said, “and I want to strengthen the institution so that others can continue to enjoy learning and a richer life.”