Marie Walker, Chief Operating Officer of The Corps Network, is a 2023 winner of the Legacy Achievement Award. The Legacy Achievement Award is one of the highest honors The Corps Network grants and recognizes exceptional leadership and notable achievements within the national Service and Conservation Corps community. Honorees are those who have worked for at least 15 years in the Corps world, served in a senior leadership position at a Corps, and made significant contributions to the national movement.
Marie has been an integral part of The Corps Network for nearly a decade. As TCN’s Chief Operating Officer, Marie supervises day-to-day operations and manages partnerships with private and federal partnerships, including AmeriCorps, the National Park Service, and the U.S. Forest Service. Marie played a major role in creating GulfCorps, a conservation and workforce development initiative focused on training local young adults for careers in the growing restoration economy along the Gulf of Mexico.
Before joining TCN in 2014, Marie was involved in the development and implementation of several innovative programs, including the first Brownsfields Job Training Program in West Virginia. Marie also spent 15 years as the Director of Programs and Development for the Citizens Conservation Corps of West Virgina. Marie served on the board of directors for several organizations, including NASCC (National Association of Service and Conservation Corps); WV Development HUB; Harpers Ferry Job Center Community Council; American Cancer Society; and Main Street Martinsburg. She currently serves as a board member of American Trails and serves as co-chair of the development committee.
When Marie is not supporting TCN staff and sharing words of wisdom, she enjoys listening to great jazz music, watching college football, and playing nine holes of golf.
“The Corps movement – including our staff at The Corps Network, our membership of Corps programs, and the young people serving in Corps – are lucky to have a leader like Marie Walker. I count myself fortunate to serve alongside her,” said Mary Ellen Sprenkel, President and CEO of The Corps Network. “Marie is always looking at the bigger picture. From her years of experience in the Corps world, she brings incredibly valuable ideas and advice to all of our programming discussions and decisions at TCN. Marie challenges us in the best way — she pushes us to think deeper, consider different perspectives, and always strive for better. It is thanks in no small part to Marie’s guidance that The Corps Network has grown over recent years to include more member organizations, more funding for Corps, and more staff at TCN. Marie is wise, caring, charismatic, and simply a joy to work with. She is extremely deserving of this honor. We thank her for her service to the Corps community.”
Marie was recognized at The Corps Network’s Legacy Achievement Awards Reception on March 7, 2023. We were honored to be joined by several of Marie’s family members and close friends. Marie’s aunt Gloria provided the following remarks:
“I learned that The Corps Network is a hardworking organization that strives to transform the lives of people in our community. Our family is so proud that our loved one is a part of this life-changing group. I heard the word ‘love’ used multiple times tonight. As a former English teacher, I recognize that ‘love’ can be a noun or a verb. It is a thing that we bounce around without any serious thought, but it becomes impactful when it becomes a verb – an action that changes lives as many of you in this room have and continue to do, including our honored family member, Marie Walker. Marie, we have learned from your actions and we commit to be guided by them. We are in awe of the love you have shown others, and we will honor it by sharing this love with others.”
“Teamwork makes the dream work!” -Marie Walker, a 2023 Legacy Achievement Awardee