Mary and Arthur Clark
Mary and Arthur Clark of Chapel Hill are both explorers. Over a lifetime, Mary, an accomplished artist, has explored the museums here and abroad to study and copy the techniques of artists from around the world. Closer to home, she has trained many of North Carolina's most accomplished contemporary artists. Arthur has been to both the North and South Poles and points around the globe. He travelled extensively while in the Air Force, eventually earning the rank of two-star general. Over the past thirty years he has explored all seven continents in order to satisfy a lively curiosity about the world that persists during his retirement.
Although both Clarks are not afraid to be entrepreneurial, Arthur says he followed the advice that Dr. Bill Friday gave him when he retired: "For the first six months just say no." The Clarks were drawn to UNC Lineberger, becoming members of the Board of Visitors in 1985 and, like many of the community leaders present during the Cancer Center's formative years, embraced the mission from day one.
Over the past 25 years the Clarks have invested in many ways, supporting annual operations, special campaigns and making a planned gift. When their daughter-in-law, Irma M. Parhad, was diagnosed with colon cancer, their involvement became more personal. Parhad, a medical professor at the Calgary Medical Center in Alberta, faced her illness with tenacious courage, but lost her life at a young age. When the Lineberger research building was being completed in the early 1990s, the Clarks decided to name the Cancer Center Director's Office in her memory.