Hazel Walker, a longtime Burbank resident and city employee who
served on several boards and committees and played pivotal roles in
the development of the Joslyn Senior Center and the Burbank Farmers’
Market, died Saturday in Newport Beach.
She was 93.
Mrs. Walker was born June 16, 1910, in Oklahoma and moved to
Burbank in 1944. She worked for the city’s Park, Recreation and
Community Services Department for 20 years, and served as outreach
director of Burbank Senior Services.
She served on the City Council’s Senior Advisory Board for more
than 20 years and was instrumental in developing the Joslyn Senior
Center. In 1977, the council named the senior center’s auditorium
after Walker in honor of her contributions.
“She has been the guardian angel for seniors in the city,” City
Manager Mary Alvord said. “In the 1970s, she was a moving force for
getting seniors services and buildings in town far before other
cities. She was on the cutting edge.”
Walker was a member of Friends of the Blind, Altrusta
International Service Club and Sisters of Providence. She was also a
founder and volunteered as the operations manager of the Burbank
Farmers Market for 18 years.
“She was a community activist who thought Burbank was a special
place and was diligent in making sure that it stayed a special
place,” said Eric Hansen, the deputy director of senior and human
services for the Park, Recreation and Community Services Department.
“She was caring, empathetic, a doer, and will be immensely missed by
those who knew her.”
Walker received many recognitions including: the Outstanding and
Unselfish Service to the Burbank Community award in 1974 from the
Burbank Noon Lions Club; the Outstanding Burbank Citizen award in
1986 from the Burbank Board of Realtors; and the Providence
Leadership award in 1999 from the Providence St. Joseph Foundation.
Walker is survived by her daughter, Kennie-Jo Rizzo; son, Timothy
Walker; grandchildren, Terri Lynn and J.J. Rizzo, and Nicole and Eric
A memorial service will be at 1 p.m. Thursday at First United
Methodist Church, 700 N. Glenoaks Blvd.