Helen Walton (1919-2007)
Helen Robson Walton was born December 3, 1919 in Claremore, OK. Her parents instilled a strong appreciation for traditional small town values, including a strong work ethic, honesty, integrity, and of giving back to the community. In April of 1942, after graduating from the University of Oklahoma with a degree in finance, Helen met an ambitious young man who was working in Pryor, OK. His name was Sam Walton who would later found Walmart Stores. They raised three sons and a daughter, Rob, Jim, John and Alice. Helen’s philanthropic activity was focused on education, the arts, families and children. She was active at the local and national level in the Presbyterian Church. Sam credited her for the original idea for the Walmart profit-sharing plan. Driven by a passion to improve the lives of less fortunate families, Helen first initiated challenge grants for SPSFBC in 1989 and continued these grants through the Walton Family Foundation. Helen believed education could provide a path to a better future for generations to come.