Troup County’s Every Day Hero Wanda Walker
Every Day Heroes, those people who go out of their way to help someone in need because they have a kind and caring heart. That person could be a teacher, a firefighter, a lawyer, a volunteer, someone who helped you, or someone you know.
In this article, I am proud to introduce one such hero, Ms. Wanda Walker. She is truly a Godly woman and such a selfless person. Walker is one of the founders of Troup Transformation, an organization formed to bring Christian influence and support to government, business, education, family culture, media, and the church. She also serves on the Board of Directors for the Atlanta Transformation League.
In Walker’s case the saying “Big things come in small packages” is an understatement. She is a powerful woman using unconditional love and God’s word to make positive changes in this world. She leaves a lasting impression on anyone she meets, yet she is a very humble woman.
After retiring from District 4 Health Services, Walker began making a plan for change and in 2007 Troup Transformation began. She volunteers at countless organizations lifting those who need it and encouraging people to help others in need.
Walker, a native of La-Grange, graduated from Troup High School and LaGrange College. She is the mother of two daughters, Christin Lepore and Sara Abbott, who works with her mother in the jail ministry and Circles of Troup County.
Walker is on the Board of Directors of Accountability Troup, which supports accountability courts in Troup County, Georgia. Accountability courts provide intervention for those who have issues requiring treatment for substance abuse and/or mental health problems. She has served on the board since its inception.
Leann Murphy, Troup County Felony Drug Court Coordinator, said “Wanda volunteers in many ways. I see Wanda at the majority of the community events that involve helping others who are less fortunate get their life back on track.” She continued to say, “She is always smiling and very encouraging.”
“She assists in leading Bible study at the jail. She gives her time and testimony to women who feel hopeless,” noted Murphy.
Wanda serves as the Secretary of the Troup County Homeless Coalition. She was instrumental in the upstart of the program. She is also on the Board of Emmaus House – LaGrange.
“Wanda may not don a cape and mask, but she is a ‘silent hero’ in our community. She is regal, selfless, and humble and chooses every day, to make a difference in the world around her. She is someone who gives her time, energy and talents to others without asking anything in return. As we recognize Wanda for her many acts of kindness; I hope that in reading her story, it will inspire a call to action and remind our community that you do not have to wear a cape to live heroically. You simply need only be a hero to one to make a difference in their life.” ~ Denna’ Muncy, Chairwoman of Troup County Homeless Coalition.
Walker has served on several community support committees for the LaGrange Police Department.
Chief Lou Dekmar stated “She is one of a kind, such a breath of fresh air. Wanda is a leader in the faith based community and has been instrumental in so many programs. She is a terrific lady with a heart of gold. She is definitely a hero to many people.”
She volunteers with Sherri Brown in Circles of Troup County which has a highimpact strategy that engages the community in owning the solution to poverty.
Sherri Brown, Director Circles of Troup County stated “Wanda has volunteered with Circles of Troup County from the beginning. She works one-on-one with a participant in Circles to help her reach her goals. Wanda is the best kind of volunteer – kind, patient, understanding, encouraging, supportive and committed. She has a way of looking at you and making you believe you can do anything. I wish I had 20 more just like her!”
When asked how she finds the time, Walker’s humble reply was “It’s what I do, when people are at work, I am doing this… I am just ministering really.”
Walker also serves as a Diplomat for the Chamber of Commerce. She visits members of the chamber and delivers gifts. She can be seen at Camp WinShape and Teen Maze each year lending a helping hand.
Murphy stated “Wanda is a person that will help in any way she can. She has such a big heart and she is very genuine.”
Walker recently wrote a book, “Strategies For Transforming Your City” in which she details the prophecies and paths the Lord sent her on and a step by step guide through the process of supporting the leaders in each of the seven spheres and advancing the Kingdom of God. You can find it on Amazon.com.
State Representative Randy Nix stated, “Wanda is very much an unsung hero (heroine)! I admire her faith and her persistence as she seeks to incorporate Biblical principles in all areas of our community life. Her tireless efforts make LaGrange and Troup County better places to live and raise a family.”
LaGrange Police Department Captain Mike Pheil, who has worked with Walker on the Mental Health Court initiative, the Community Outreach Committee, and the Homeless Coalition, stated “Ms. Wanda Walker is a fine Christian Lady, known to me as the face of Troup Transformation. Ms. Wanda has proven to be an effective and persistent “behind the scenes” worker, striving to bring the Faith Community together with local business members, non-profit organizations, civilian volunteers and government officials to find solutions to situations that negatively impact less fortunate members of our community. Though I understand that she is directly involved in a litany of varying projects and initiatives, I have personally worked with her on the local Mental Health Court initiative, the Community Outreach Committee as sponsored by the LaGrange Police Department, and the Troup County Homeless Coalition. These interactions have affirmed for me that she not only works for positive change and expects others who have the capacity to influence change to do so collaboratively; she personally puts into action her own energy – using the resources that she learns of through these different initiatives.”
He explained “Most prominent for me as an example is the initiative that she and several other ladies within her church undertook after Ms. Wanda learned of the resources of the local Feeding the Valley Food Bank. She discovered that registered non-profit organizations can purchase food for minimal costs through this food bank and distribute it – free of charge – to those in need. She and her church group have in essence adopted the residents of the local Stay Lodge on Whitesville Road, delivering boxes of food to the financially struggling residents on a regular basis.”
“Simply put – she’s the action in the mantra, “Let’s do something!” ~ LaGrange Police Department Captain Mike Pheil Former Mayor, Jeff Lukken worked with Walker on several community projects and serves on the Troup Transformation Advisory Board. He stated “Wanda truly has a passion for helping others and making our world a better place. She has an incredible ability to let each of us see and feel the needs of others, and to ignite our inner desire to help. Wanda is the perfect model of a community leader… empathetic, selfless, energetic, and humble.”
Walker hosts ‘You Make the Difference’ a 30 minute interview style TV program. Wanda invites Christian leaders from the community to share their vision on the show. You Make the Difference is seen on WJCN cable channel 22 on Tuesdays at 10 am and 6:30 pm; and Sundays at 4 pm.
Walker spoke of the Faith Nights on the square and the joy of seeing some of the patrons from nearby businesses hearing the praise and worship music and coming out to join in. “What I like about worship on the square is that it is in the center of our city… the praise and worship goes up from the center of our city.”
Walker has truly made a difference in this community. She is much more than a role model to so many people. We salute you Wanda Walker a true Hero!
Vicki Sharpton Staff Writer