As we are heading to the season of giving it seems appropriate to speak about our benefactors. This month I will be focusing on Mr. & Mrs. Bill & Shirley Walker.
Mr. Walker was a founding member of our Foundation, he along with 3 other gentlemen found merit in establishing a community based organization to help the citizens and charities in Mission. His philanthropy didn’t stop there, together with his wife, Shirley, they established a couple funds at the Foundation.
One of the most recognized funds in our Foundation is the George Willoughby Cooke Award. Established in 1992 by Mr. and Mrs. Walker as a way to honor their friend and recognize the efforts of middle school children, this award started a small ripple in Foundations across the world. In 2002 at an International Community Foundation conference in Vernon, the Cooke award was a topic of discussion as it focused on a younger group of students and the positive effect it had on their education, something that had never been considered by most groups.
Another fund started by the Walkers is the Mission District Historical Archives Fund. This fund was set up to automatically disburse funds to the Archive centre annually in July with monies to be used to assist in archival projects, purchase equipment, etc.
Although Mr. Walker is no longer with us, Mrs. Walker does participate in our annual events. An artist and published author, Mrs. Walker still likes to get involved in community activities and although her health prevents her from attending all, she does try to make it to many events and is on stage presenting awards when able.
We at the Foundation are grateful for people like the Walkers who have the foresight and ability to help others and make our world a better place to be in.
So if you’re out and about in town and run into Mrs. Walker, please thank her for all that she does for our community.