Alumnae News & Highlights

For more than 50 years, Addie Cobb Ward and her family were at the helm of an extremely successful – and sweet – American institution: The Russell Stover candy company. Although it was difficult to obtain a loan on the venture, she and her husband, Louis, took a risk in 1960 to purchase the company, and they built it into one of the largest chocolate manufacturers in North America, eventually selling to Lindt in 2014.

Addie was a Hathaway Brown boarding student for five years, joining the school community in eighth grade and continuing through 12th. She graduated in 1951 and went on to attend Briarcliff, then a women’s college in New York. She met Louis at a summer cottage in northern Michigan and they married in 1955, settling in Kansas City, where they raised their three children.

Outside of the business world, Addie has long been a supporter of causes that mean something to her. One of her more powerful contributions was spurred by her unexpected quadruple bypass surgery. Noting that statistics show that women don’t pay close enough attention to their bodies, she funded the Women’s Heart Health Center at The University of Kansas Hospital’s Center for Advanced Heart Care in 2012 to help reverse that trend. At HB, she also established an endowed scholarship to provide a deserving student with the gift of an HB education – something she might not otherwise be able to have. For that generosity, we could not be more grateful.

  • Distinguished Alumnae Award