Robert Burns

Placed Leader

Robert Burns

Director, Home Region Program
Walton Family Foundation

September 3, 2021

Koya partnered with the Walton Family Foundation on its Director, Home Region Program search. A family-led foundation, three generations of the descendants of the organization’s founders, Sam and Helen Walton, and their spouses, work together to lead the foundation and create access to opportunity for people and communities.

Our work resulted in the appointment of Robert Burns. In this role, Burns will oversee the program’s 2025 Strategy, which focuses on building a vibrant, inclusive Northwest Arkansas and supporting economic and community development in the Arkansas-Mississippi Delta.

Burns brings more than 25 years of experience in workforce housing, philanthropy, community development and governmental affairs to the foundation. Most recently, he led efforts to promote financial inclusion and economic empowerment as senior vice president of Citi.

Throughout his career, Burns partnered with nonprofit and public agencies to build more inclusive cities; managed a Community Development Financial Institution; directed nonprofit solutions for an affordable housing organization and worked in local government in four states, including Kansas and Missouri. He also has experience leading community development efforts supporting nonprofits in Arkansas and the Delta.

Burns holds a master’s in public administration from the University of Kansas and a bachelor’s in political science from Appalachian State University.

Read the announcement: Walton Family Foundation Announces Social Impact Leader as Home Region Program Director.