Indiana University trustee Melanie Walker, 62, has died, according to a press release from the university Sunday.
Walker served on the Board of Trustees after her appointment by then-Gov. Mike Pence in 2016.
"So many are fighting back tears today with the sad news of Melanie Walker's passing," Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb said. "Melanie will forever be so many things to many people around the world. Her combination of a zest for life, love for family, friends and Indiana University, and her globally inclusive work ethic are characteristics I hope every young Hoosier can grow up to embody. I will miss learning from her, especially how to attach action to empathy and always with a servant's heart. Janet and I are praying comfort and strength will surround the Walker family as this bright light of life finds a forever home in heaven."
While serving as a trustee, Walker was involved in the Dean's Council for the O'Neill School of Public and Environmental Affairs, the Manufacturing and Public Policy Steering Committee and the Steering Committee of the IU Women's Philanthropy Council.
"All of us in the Indiana University community are heartbroken by the passing of trustee Melanie Walker. We extend our greatest sympathies to her family and many friends during this difficult time," IU President Pamela Whitten said. "Her dedication and service to this university, the community and the state went far beyond her role as a trustee. We will forever be grateful for her leadership, friendship and commitment to IU."
Walker was born in Ithaca, New York on June 17, 1959, according to the release. She earned a Bachelor of Science in industrial and labor relations from Cornell University in 1985.
Until her passing, Walker was CEO of the North American group of companies of Tsuchiya, a Nagoya, Japan-based company, according to the release. At age 34, she was the first woman named president of Bloomington-based TASUS Corp.