Born in Houston, Texas, Nancy graduated from St. Stephen's School in Austin, then went on to Smith College in Northampton, Massachusetts, where she earned a bachelor's degree in art history. Nancy taught art and art history at St. Stephen's and was the Assistant Director of the Kiko Art Gallery in Houston. Since 1970, Nancy has been a freelance photographer and community volunteer in Austin.
Nancy has served on various boards including Austin Museum of Art, Save Our Springs, KMFA Classical Radio, the Texas Photographic Society, Conspirare, St. Stephen's Episcopal School, Women and their Work, and the Mental Health Association. She is also on the Advisory Councils of The University of Texas Libraries, the Center for Women and Gender Studies, and the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.
She has two children—Laura, who is an attorney and mother of two, and Wilson, a gallery owner and web designer.