A Life of Faith, Entrepreneurship and Community Service

Reverend Maxine Walker was born on July 25, 1936 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Walker graduated from Cortez Business College before receiving her degree from the Moody Bible Institute. During her career, Walker created the first gospel magazine printed in Chicago, “The Platform”, while working for Gatlings’ entities as a public relations person. Walker then developed another magazine, a television talk show entitled, “Touching People”, and a gospel play that appeared at the Regal Theatre in Chicago called “One Lord, One Faith, and One Baptism”.

In 1980, Walker was called to the ministry. Walker was then ordained as a reverend in 1997. She then became the editor of the gospel newspaper “The Spiritual Perspective”. Walker then began to write her first book, “Ten Reasons Why You Should Not Use an Herbalist”, which educates people about health options when facing debilitating illnesses.  

In addition, Walker owned a fish market on the south side of Chicago and worked as a classified specialist for the Chicago Defender.  

Reverend Walker formed relationships with many notable people throughout her life and would frequently bring her son, Mark Walker along as a young, curious entrepreneur in the making. She counts among her list of influential ministers, Nelson Mandela, The Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan, Reverend Jesse L. Jackson Sr., Apostle H. Daniel Wilson, Dr. Horace Smith and Bishop Willy Jordan, all of whom share Walker’s passion for teaching the community.  

The Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan said that Rev. Walker was his true friend and sister, and was always working to connect those whom she felt had the Anointing of God upon them, and the Spirit of God dwelling within them.

In February 2024, her son Mark Walker opened a restaurant in honor of his late mother. He named the restaurant, Maxine’s. The restaurant is located in the Chatham neighborhood where the Reverend Walker and her family resided for years.

When owner Mark Walker was asked what inspired the restaurant’s name, he said, “Maxine’s Fine Dining restaurant represents everything my mother embodied…It’s a meeting place that boasts sophistication, elegance, fine decor and has an aesthetically pleasing presentation of food options”.

In the April 2024 edition of Chicago Magazine, Maxine’s was recognized in theTop 10 Hottest Restaurants in Chicago. Reverend Maxine Walker’s legacy continues. Walker passed away on November 2, 2007, at the age of 71.