October 30, 2017 – Kenucky to the World presented featured special guest Jan Helson, along with Rachel Annette Helson, Justin Walker and Anne Walker, in a conversation with Sam Corbett, President of the Jefferson County Public Education Foundation.
Jan is a dedicated philanthropist, passionate entrepreneur, and successful businesswoman who has been committed to the growth of Louisville throughout her whole life. She has spent 25 years with her husband and business partner, Tim, launching and managing new business ventures.
Their successful businesses include their real estate company Helson Development Corporation, founding and managing the community space that eventually became Louisville’s Americana Community Center, and a family niche food manufacturing business, Golden Foods/Golden Brands, which has become a global leader within its field.
Jan has served on the boards of StageOne Family Theatre, Ursuline Campus Schools Development Committee, the Fundraising Committee at the Bluegrass Center for Autism and many other educational organizations. Currently, Jan serves as the Host of the Compassionate Louisville Youth Education Constellation.
Jan and her daughter Rachel Annette wrote a children’s book called Philanthropy: A Big Word for Big-Hearted People, designed to inspire kids to give back. In 2011, the Community Foundation of Louisville provided funding to Junior Achievement of Kentuckiana to introduce “PHILANTHROPY” into classrooms throughout the Kentuckiana region and to create the first JA Philanthropy House at the Kentuckiana JA BizTown, utilizing artwork, text, and lessons from the Helson’s’ book.
In 2011, at the age of 51, Jan took her commitment to giving to the next step with Global Game Changers, and proclaimed that her “Second Act” will be committed to helping kids realize that not only can they make a difference, but that they have a responsibility to Ignite Good!® to make that difference throughout the world. Ultimately her goal is to significantly impact the social-emotional and academic outcomes for Kentucky’s most at-risk children through intentional service-learning and leadership curriculum. The launch of Global Game Changers was the next step in fulfilling that commitment.
Jan has two grown children, Rachel Annette and Jackson, and lives in Louisville, Kentucky with her husband, Tim.