(1919 – 2010)
Margaret Whatley came to Extension in 1941 and worked as the assistant home demonstration agent in Marengo County. With a move to Wilcox County in 1944, she was promoted to home demonstration agent. She was there until 1969 when she was promoted to Associate County Extension Chairman in Jefferson County.
She helped to improve the home economics programs in Jefferson County through the use of informational programs and new teaching techniques. The goal was to help homemakers achieve better living. Miss Whatley encouraged women to use the time, energy, money, and abilities of the family to achieve the goals the family considered important. She offered advice on how to prepare good, nutritious low-cost meals; select and buy clothes for the family; make the home more convenient, attractive, and comfortable; and make housekeeping easier.
Through her Leadership Schools, Miss Whatley saw membership in the Jefferson County Homemakers Council grow from 600 to approximately 1,300 members.
Miss Whatley was very active in the Alabama Home Demonstration Agents Association and served as its president in 1960.
Upon her retirement in 1974, then Director of Extension Ralph Jones told Miss Whatley that she would be leaving literally hundreds of admirers and personal friends who loved and respected her.
Following retirement, she was involved in the real estate business in Birmingham for a number of years.
Margaret was a native of Opelika, Alabama. She earned her B.S. Degree from Auburn University in 1944 and her Master’s Degree in 1966 from the University of Alabama.
For her dedication to Alabama families, the name Margaret Whatley is inscribed on the dedicatory plaque of the Extension Memorial Chapel.
Chapel Plaque Inscription Number: 546