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- Hollobon, Joan
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39 cm of textual records
1 photograph : b&w. ; 18 x 13 cm.
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Name of creator
Joan May Hollobon is a Canadian writer and reporter. She was born January 29, 1920, in the Isle of Wight (United Kingdom) to Ernest Frederick “Tony” and Alice Hollobon (nee Ford), and grew up in North Wales (United Kingdom).
During World War II, Hollobon volunteered as an administrative and press officer with the British Red Cross and the St. John War Organization in Wales. From 1946 to 1948, she worked in Berlin for the Allied Control Commission of Germany and Austria (a British Army bureau). And, in 1949, she worked for the Canadian and British Reader’s Digest. In 1952, Hollobon emigrated to Canada where she worked at the Kirkland Lake Northern Daily News (Kirkland Lake, Ontario), first as editor of the women’s section, later as a general reporter. In 1954, Hollobon moved to the daily North Bay Nugget (North Bay, Ontario) where she worked as general reporter and columnist.
In 1956, Hollobon began working as a general reporter for the Globe and Mail in Toronto. After covering medical news in the early 1960s, Hollobon received the fellowship in the Advancement of Science Writing and attended the Graduate School of Journalism at Columbia University in 1963-1964. Upon her return to Canada, and during the 1960s and 1970s, Hollobon wrote in-depth pieces on medical subjects that gained her national recognition. Some pieces included the Saskatchewan Medicare crisis of 1962, reportages on mental care facilities, and a three-part series on transsexuality and the first sex reassignment operation in Canada, among others.
During the 1970s, she travelled to Dublin for the Canadian, British, and Irish Medical Associations Conference and, from there, she wrote several articles about the medical conditions in the Isles, especially focusing on Northern Ireland during the Troubles. Also during the 1970s, Hollobon was part of the organizing committee for the Canadian Science Writers Association.
In 1983, Hollobon became assignment editor for the Globe and Mail. She retired in 1985 and, shortly after, she received the Canadian Medical Association Medal of Honour (1986), and published the book The lion’s tail: a history of the Wellesley Hospital 1912-1987 (1987). In 1987, the Health Care Public Relations Association of Canada (today Canadian Public Relations Society) presented the Hollobon Award for the first time. The award is given to members of the media whose work has contributed significantly to the public’s understanding of healthcare. And, in 2019, Hollobon was named Officer of the Order of Canada. In 2022, the National Newspaper Awards named their Beat Reporting award after Joan Hollobon.
In retirement, Hollobon shared a house with her friend Kay Rex.
Scope and content
Materials created or accumulated by Joan Hollobon as part of her professional life as a journalist. Includes research materials, drafts of articles, and articles written by Hollobon and other journalists in different media. Media include:
- Northern Daily News
- North Bay Nugget
- Globe and Mail
- Globe Magazine
- Canadian Family Physician
- The Pass Promoter
- Toronto Star
- Star Weekly Magazine
- University Affairs from the University of Toronto
- New York Times
- Scientific American
- Time Magazine
- Canadian Museum of Health and Medicine at the Toronto Hospital
- Science Medicine
- Science Forum
- Homemaker’s Digest
Also contains related correspondence and drafts of speeches for different events, as well as articles about Hollobon’s professional career and awards.
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Donated by Joan Hollobon in 2021.
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Some of the content in series includes examples of outdated terminology and language that is no longer used or appropriate today, especially regarding medical and social terminology.
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Described by CGD in 2021.
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Issues of Science Forum were digitized by Evidence for Democracy. The pdf versions are accessible online and stored in Google Drive.