ST. LOUIS — Cora Faith Walker, the former Missouri representative from Ferguson who then served as St. Louis County Executive Sam Page's policy chief, has died at 37. The cause of death has not been announced.
The Missouri Democratic Party said Thursday that "we are devastated to learn of Cora Faith Walker’s passing."
"She was a perfect example of a dedicated public servant who deeply cared for the St. Louis community," it said. "We’ve lost someone very special and too soon."
First elected in 2016 to represent the House's 74th District, the Democrat in 2019 resigned to take the job with Page's administration. Her county biography says she had overseen government relations, regulatory affairs and public policy operations.
Among other things, Walker served on a task force studying women's participation and advancement in the workforce. On behalf of Page, she had also commented on efforts to bring Afghan refugees to St. Louis. She also had worked on Medicaid expansion and health reform, the county biography said.
Page issued a statement Friday afternoon:
"I am deeply saddened by the passing of Cora Faith Walker. Cora walked into my office every day with a hundred ideas and the determination to do them. She was a passionate public servant who advocated for women, newborns, survivors of sexual violence, reproductive rights, seniors, and frontline health care workers. She will be greatly missed by her St. Louis County government colleagues and me. We offer our condolences to her husband, Tim, and her parents."
And St. Louis Mayor Tishaura Jones' office said in a statement Friday that Walker "was a fixture in the St. Louis region, a powerful advocate for her community, and a fiercely loyal friend to all who knew and loved her, especially to Mayor Jones."
St. Louis County Councilwoman Lisa Clancy, who described herself as a friend of Walker's, said in 2020 that Walker had often talked "about how good policy is good politics."
Read the full story on the St. Louis Business Journal website.
In the news of Walker's passing, many took to social media to express their condolences for Walker and her family.
Peter Merideth, a Democrat who represents St. Louis in the Missouri House, wrote on his Facebook "It just hurts so much, and I know so many people feel the same. She was such a beautiful and brilliant human, who fought tirelessly to make the world a better place."
Pamela Boyd, a St. Louis alderwoman, also took to Facebook to express her condolences on behalf of the African American Aldermanic Caucus.
Missouri House Minority Leader Crystal Quade released a statement about Walker's passing.
“We are all shocked and heartbroken at the sudden loss of an incredible friend and a brilliant advocate for so many," Quade said. "Cora Faith will be remembered as a fighter and a person who dedicated her life to making the world better.”
St. Louis Democratic Rep. Rasheen Aldridge also posted to Facebook about Walker's death, saying in part "Cora Faith Walker words couldn't express how much you mean to this world and me."