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Helen Farmer


Country Music Association

Helen Farmer, native Nashvillian and first generation American, sought out opportunity and accomplished much throughout her career that traversed public education, health care and finally, the love of her life, country music.

In 1968, she returned to her career as Program Director of the American Cancer Society. During this time she founded the annual Music Row Tennis Invitational, which today is a million dollar benefit for Vanderbilt Children's Hospital. The Cancer Society honored her for her work in cancer awareness, working with Oprah Winfrey, then at the Nashville CBS-TV affiliate. She was also instrumental in helping Nashville women obtain free pap tests through Lentz Health Center, for which she also received an award.

Helen worked for Nashville Metro Public Schools from 1950-1964 and was fondly known by all as "Miss Helen." From there she moved on to be a full time wife and mother for a brief time.

Helen's work with the Cancer Society provided her the opportunity to network with the music industry and by 1975, she had been recruited to join CMA as the director of programs and special events. Helen's involvement with CMA included directing Far Fair, the CMA Awards Shows and Talent Buyers Entertainment Marketplace, as well as addressing legislative issues on both the state and federal levels. She developed programs that promoted country music on college campuses with seminars and concerts through NACA. Helen retired in 1994. She and her husband, Bill Farmer, raised her two sons Sonny and Michael. She has five grandchildren.

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