Fine, loving, gentle, capable — a grand lady is how Shirley Kohlwes described her mother, Doris Walker Appleman, whose daughters created the Doris Walker Appleman Endowed Scholarship for freshmen women majoring in business.
Appleman’s daughters, Mary Ann Andersen, Kohlwes and Jan Corriston, created the scholarship in memory of their mother and the values that she lived by as a business woman. One female student who reflects these values will receive this renewable scholarship in the fall 2021 semester as long as they meet the requirements.
Benjamin Blackford, director of the Melvin D. and Valorie G. Booth School of Business, said the $1,000 Doris Walker Appleman Endowed Scholarship is offered to any female student pursuing a business major, but first-generation students are preferred. The scholarship requires a 3.0 grade point average and is renewable once a year.
Andersen said Appleman valued friends, family, hard work and being kind to others, even if she had to look hard to find it.
“What she tried to … live by and that is, ‘to thy own self be true,’” Andersen said. “That was who she was.”
Andersen and Corriston said their mother grew up during the Great Depression on a farm just outside of Burlington Junction, Missouri. This upbringing led Appleman to understanding the importance of saving, and not just saving money.
Corriston said her mother saved everything she could, as it was part of her childhood to keep things that may be useful.
“Until the day she died, she kept the rubber bands from the newspaper,” Corriston said. “I mean, she never bought a rubber band because she had them from the newspaper.”
Although the Great Depression greatly influenced Appleman’s life, Andersen said her mother’s love for business first sparked when she took a commercial training class at Maryville High School, where she learned how to be a secretary.
Andersen said Appleman’s childhood home did not come with the opportunity to get a good education. She said Appleman and her siblings, when they were high school-aged, lived with a relative in Maryville in order to receive a better education.
Appleman’s daughters explained that after high school, Appleman’s father was not able to afford to send his daughter to college, which led to Appleman getting her first job as a secretary for the principal at Maryville High School.
Andersen said that education was important to people raised in the era that Appleman was.
“You didn’t take education for granted in those days,” Andersen said. “That’s one reason we wanted to do this scholarship.”
Corriston, Andersen and Kohlwes said their mother had many secretarial and business-like jobs throughout her life. They said Appleman worked at a Chicago law firm. She worked for the U.S. Air Force as a secretary and was later promoted to be a secretary for the North American Aerospace Defense Command during the Cold War. She also worked at the Nodaway Valley Bank in Maryville as a secretary for the president of the bank.
Andersen said throughout these different jobs, Appleman found time to keep up with her family and social life. At one point, when she was living in Seattle, Washington, Appleman volunteered as a baby cuddler at a local hospital and by the time she finished, she had accumulated 1,000 hours of service.
“She never waivered,” Andersen said.
Andersen and Corriston said that their mother’s interest in business was not limited to just her work. Andersen said Appleman would subscribe to money saving magazines, which she would also pass on to her children so that they could learn better methods for saving money.
Appleman’s daughters said they remembered their mother waiting for sales before buying clothes or material to make clothes for her family. They also said she would buy quality items and take care of them to make them last as long as she could. They said she even got into investing her money after gathering a better understanding of what investing meant for her money.
All of these experiences led to Appleman’s strong business and secretarial skills, and is what also led to Andersen, Kohlwes and Corriston to create the Doris Walker Appleman Endowed Scholarship.
Corriston said she and her sisters were able to get a college education was because they each received scholarships. They said with this scholarship, any woman studying business who meets the qualifications may receive the scholarship.
Andersen said if the woman who either does not continue to qualify for the scholarship or does not continue to study business, then a new recipient will be chosen for the $1,000 scholarship.
Appleman’s daughters said that they felt that this scholarship provides an opportunity for young business women. Blackford, whose grandmother was sisters with Appleman, agreed that the scholarship opened up new opportunities for women that they may not previously had.
“It’s also a great opportunity for incoming students to have some financial support in her honor that are entering the Booth School of Business,” Blackford said.
Blackford said discussions about him being part of the selection committee for the Doris Walker Appleman Endowed Scholarship have been held, but there has not been a final decision on who will be part of the selection committee.
“It’s always great to have an opportunity to help students,” Blackford said. “We focus on student success.”