Lettie Pate Whitehead Scholars
Continuing the legacy of Lettie Pate Whitehead, Mercer University’s Lettie Pate Whitehead Scholars Program equips female students from diverse backgrounds, who have demonstrated academic excellence, service, and leadership, to achieve their educational goals, while challenging them to inspire and empower the communities they serve.
The Lettie Pate Whitehead Scholarship provides recipients with a rigorous academic experience combined with community engagement, leadership development, and mentorship opportunities. Lettie Pate Whitehead Scholars make a significant extracurricular commitment to participate in a variety of activities, including an annual celebration event, service projects, developmental workshops, and other experiences.
About Lettie Pate Whitehead
A business, church, and civic leader in Atlanta during the late 19th and early 20th centuries, Lettie Pate Whitehead and her husband secured an exclusive contract to bottle and sell Coca-Cola throughout most of the United States. When her husband died, Mrs. Whitehead immediately assumed responsibility for the family’s business affairs, including the bottling business and real estate holdings. In 1934, she became one of the first women to serve on the board of directors of a major American corporation, serving as director of The Coca-Cola Company for almost 20 years.
Throughout her life, Mrs. Whitehead felt a strong sense of duty to help those in need, as she supported numerous charitable organizations in Georgia and her home state of Virginia. Her benevolence even extended to England and France during World War II as she made gifts to the Queen’s Fund for air raid victims and furnished ambulances for the French. Before her death, she established a foundation to ensure that her philanthropy could influence future generations.
To learn more about Mrs. Whitehead and her continued philanthropy, visit the Lettie Pate Whitehead Foundation.