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Close Friends Helped Lifelong Educators Marjorie and Charles Williamson Leave a Lasting Legacy at Boise State

Marjorie “Marge” and Charles Williamson

Sisters Jo Jilek and Marcia Rausch (née Neal) were small children when teachers Marjorie “Marge” and Charles Williamson moved to their neighborhood in Weiser, Idaho. Together, they raised kittens, and Jo said she often visited Marge at home — provided Marge’s black and white stuffed bear was present.

“If the bear was there, I could stay and visit,” Jo said. “But if the bear wasn’t there, I had to go home. I have that bear to this day. That’s a really special memory.”

The Williamsons’ journeys as educators took them across Idaho and the West. In the 1950s, Marge taught at Weiser High School (where Marcia and Jo’s father was the principal), Capital High School in Boise, Idaho, and at Boise State University, where she taught business for many years and earned the nickname “Mighty Marge.” Charles taught agriculture at Weiser High School and the University of Idaho, and ended his career at the Veterans Administration as a counselor. This journey led the Williamsons to make a planned gift of $500,000 to Boise State.

Charles and Marge met when they were hired to teach at Weiser High School. There, they fell in love and married, and moved close to the home of Principal Bob Neal, his wife Virginia, and their daughters Marcia and Jo, who were small children at the time.

Over the years, Marcia, Jo and the Williamsons stayed close, with Marge hosting bridal and baby showers for the sisters. During the Williamsons’ final years, Marcia and Jo helped them with their end-of-life plans.

As trustees for the Williamsons’ estate, Marcia and Jo directed the gift to Boise State, endowing the Marjorie and Charles Williamson True Blue Scholarship for COBE students. Endowed scholarships are an essential part of how Boise State keeps education affordable, providing sustainable support for generations of Broncos. The named scholarship, Marcia said, “was a nice way to impact Idaho students in their educational journey and help Marge and Charles’ legacy and name live on.”

“That’s really important to us,” Jo said. “Their life doesn’t end. Someone will continue to talk about them: ‘This person helped me,’ paying it forward.”

If you or someone you know is interested in learning how to make a gift to support students and Boise State University through an estate plan, please contact the Gift Planning office at 208-426-2813, email, or visit