Legacy of Mrs. Evans
The Foundation’s grantmaking is inspired by the life of Lettie Pate Whitehead Evans, an extraordinary philanthropist and businesswoman. She was the wife of Joseph B. Whitehead, one of the original bottlers of Coca-Cola. When Mr. Whitehead died at an early age, Lettie Pate took over her husband’s bottling business and real estate interests, guiding both to great success. She became one of the first female directors of any major American corporation when she was appointed to the board of The Coca-Cola Company in 1934.
Mrs. Evans gave generously to many educational and cultural institutions in both Georgia and Virginia, where she made a home with her second husband Colonel Arthur Kelly Evans. At her death The Coca-Cola Company honored her thus: “Endowed with material things, she had a conviction that she held them as trustee for the poor, the meek and the unfortunate.”