Carol Jenkins Barnett, who is the daughter of Publix co-founder George Jenkins, has died. She was 65 years old.
Barnett died at home. She had Alzheimer’s disease for a long time. It was her last wish to die at home.
Barnett started at Publix in 1972 as a cashier at Grove Park Shopping Center. Later she worked in the company’s corporate marketing, research, and development department. Barnett went to Florida Southern College and got a bachelor’s degree in business and marketing.
In 1983, she was elected to Publix’s board of directors. She served on the board for 33 years and, in 1991, became its chairperson. In 1998, she got an honoris causa from her alma mater.
Jenkins and her husband are well known for their philanthropy work, giving money to nonprofits. They gave back to United Way, Florida Partnership for School Readiness, Family Fundamentals, and more. Jenkins’s final philanthropic gift was the founding of Bonnet Springs Park.
Publix CEO Todd Jones said, “We are deeply saddened by the loss of a great humanitarian and community advocate. Carol was a kind person who did many good things. Her work will help other people for many years.
Barnett’s husband also died. She had two sons, Wesley and Nicholas. They each have a wife and three children. Those are Raleigh, Birdie, and Zoey.
A memorial service will be held at First United Methodist Church in Lakeland. The family requests that you donate to Bonnet Springs Park instead of sending flowers. The family asks for privacy during this difficult time as they mourn the loss of their loved one.
Follow us on Twitter