Burwell, currently president of the Global Development program at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, will also lead the company's Global Women's Economic Empowerment initiative and its social, environmental, and economic opportunity efforts in Africa. Last year, the giant retailer and its foundation awarded some $799 million in cash and in-kind gifts to address a range of global issues, including sustainable agriculture, hunger relief, increased access to healthy and affordable foods, and women's economic empowerment, making it the country's largest corporate donor.
"The Walmart Foundation is a major, strategic part of our model for making a difference around the world," said Walmart president and CEO Mike Duke. "Sylvia has proven expertise and real passion for giving people the tools they need to rise out of poverty, addressing hunger issues and promoting sustainable development. We are fortunate to have her in this leadership role, and her impact will be felt by the communities and people we serve."