Lois E. Hole, CM, DStJ, AOE, (died January 6, 2005,
Alberta) was a Canadian politician, businesswoman, educator, and best-selling author.
She was the Lieutenant Governor of
from February 10, 2000 until her death. She was known
as the "Queen of Hugs" for breaking with protocol and hugging
almost everyone she met, including journalists, diplomats and other
was born as Lois Elsa Veregin in Buchanan,
Saskatchewan to Milce Veregin and Elisa Nordstrom.
moved to Edmonton,
Alberta in 1948, where Lois completed her education at
Strathcona Composite High School.
In 1950, she met Ted Hole,
a young University of Alberta agriculture student. Several years later
they married and moved to a farm near St. Albert,
Lois and her husband, Ted Hole, ran a successful market garden
business from their farm which they, along with their sons Bill and
Jim, incorporated as Hole's Greenhouses & Gardens
in 1979. It is currently one of Western Canada's
largest retail greenhouse stores.
In 1993 Lois Hole wrote her first book, Vegetable
, and went on to write five more in the "Favourites"
series. There are currently more that 750,000 copies of the various
books in this series in print. The series won the Educational Media
Award from the Professional Plant Growers Association in 1996. In
1998, Hole's Greenhouse began publishing their own books starting
with Hole's autobiographical I'll Never Marry a Farmer
Lois Hole wrote several books with her son, Jim. Hole's Greenhouse
has continued to publish gardening books along with a successful
annual magazine called Lois' Spring Gardening
She was appointed a member of the Order
in 1999 and a Dame of Justice of the Most Venerable Order of the Hospital of St
John of Jerusalem
in 2000. In 1995, she was named Edmonton
Business and Professional Woman of the Year and St. Albert's
Citizen of the Year. In 2003 she was awarded the Gandhi, King,
Ikeda Humanitarian Award. She was made an "Honorary Patricia" by
the 1st Battalion Princess Patricia's
Canadian Light Infantry
Ted and Lois Hole's deaths
During his wife's term in office, Ted Hole died of cancer in April
2003. She herself had been diagnosed with abdominal cancer
in 2002, making a public announcement the
following year when she began treatment in early 2003. Her health
improved, temporarily, but by late 2004, her case was terminal. Her
illness prevented her from making several scheduled public
appearances. She died in office at the Royal Alexandra Hospital in
Edmonton on January 6, 2005.
Most sources have cited 1933 as Lois Hole's year of birth based on
her reported age at death. However, the Edmonton Journal, the Royal Alberta United
Services Institute's newsletter and the Parliament of Albertaindicate that she was born in 1929.
The Alberta Library Trustees Association (ALTA) established the
Lois Hole Award
in 2001. In November 2004, two
months before Lois' death, the Capital Health Authority in Edmonton
announced that a new wing of the Royal Alexandra Hospital
named The Lois Hole Hospital for Women
. It is
scheduled to open 2010 and will consolidate the women's health
programs and services currently based at the Royal Alexandria
Hospital into one building.
In April 19, 2005 the Lois Hole Centennial Provincial Park was
established, becoming the 69th provincial park in Alberta. The park
contains the former Big Lake Natural Area and an additional 302
hectares of Crown land, for a total of 1421 hectares. The lake
makes up around 59 per cent of the park's total area.
In 2008 the Edmonton Public
opened their newest location, the Lois Hole
in southwest Edmonton. It features a sculpture of
Lois Hole and a reading garden.
In 2009, the City of St. Albert declared May 14 Lois Hole Day. A
bronze statue designed by Barbara
called A Legacy of Love and Learning was unveiled at
city hall on this day.
Personal Education and Involvement in Education
- Lois Hole's Vegetable Favourites (originally published
as Northern Vegetable Gardening)
- Lois Hole's Bedding Plant Favourites (originally
published as Northern Flower Gardening: Bedding
- Lois Hole's Perennial Favourites
- Lois Hole's Tomato Favourites
- Lois Hole's Rose Favourites
- Lois Hole's Tree & Shrub Favourites
- I'll Never Marry a Farmer
- Herbs & Edible Flowers
- The Best of Lois Hole
- Bedding Plants Q&A (with son Jim Hole)
- Roses Q&A (with son Jim Hole)
- Perennials Q&A (with son Jim Hole)
- Vegetables Q&A (with son Jim Hole)
- Trees & Shrubs Q&A (with son Jim Hole)
- Lois' Spring Gardening annual magazine