Doris Hoag (1931-2014)
Ladies of Charity USA (LCUSA) President 1994-1998
AIC Representative 1998-2006
Margaret Hanson and Albe McGurk share:
We were at the national assembly in Milwaukee, Sept. 11-14, when we received the news that Doris had suffered a stroke. Her daughter Suzanne Johnson, soon to be installed as the next LCUSA President-Elect, immediately left to be with her father and family. All sorts of emotions and memories come when you receive news of this kind.
Doris was first and foremost a wife and mother. She and her husband John had 10 children, 37 grandchildren and 18 great grandchildren. For the ordinary woman this would have been enough, but Doris was not an ordinary woman. In addition to attending nursing school and working as an RN, Doris volunteered at school, church and various organizations. She enjoyed reading, quilting, golf, dominos, bridge, dancing and traveling. She had a fun loving spirit and liked a good party.
Doris lived a truly Vincentian life, exemplifying “To serve rather than be served in Humility Simplicity and Charity.” After becoming a Lady of Charity in 1977, Doris worked tirelessly in various activities of the local association and served as the President of the Kansas City Metropolitan Association in 1988-89.
During her tenure as the LCUSA President much was accomplished by her enthusiasm, hard work and cheerful demeanor. She encouraged local associations to add to their membership and promoted the initiation and formulation of a long range plan. Doris not only found a new meeting place for the spring board meeting at the Franciscan Prayer Center in Independence, Mo., when the Daughters of Charity closed a previous site, but also with the help of the Vincentian Fathers was able to relocate the National Service Center to their provincial office building. Doris oversaw the production and sale of a pocket calendar and a national cookbook in time for the 1996 Biennial Meeting in Cleveland.
It was Doris’ insight that in order to grow and expand the organization of the Ladies of Charity as the new century approached, change must occur. Under her guidance LCUSA considered ways in which it could be better prepared to serve those in need. During the biennial meeting in Cleveland, workshops on leadership motivated the members to realize their potential and provided inspiration to participate in the organization more fully. Doris introduced the tradition of a shared breakfast for association presidents and regional vice-presidents at the annual meeting, as a way to share ideas and provide an opportunity for presidents to know better their regional vice president. In 1998 in Orlando Doris presided over the first national assembly LCUSA held independently of Catholic Charities USA, a practice continued successfully to this day.
When her two terms of office as President of LCUSA ended, Doris went on to serve as the representative of LCUSA on the executive board of the International Association of Charities (AIC). Laurence de la Brosse, AIC president, said “she was so very dynamic, ready to help, full of joy, a genuine member of the AIC family.”
I have fought the good fight. I have finished the race. I have kept the faith. (2Timothy 4:7)
Thanks Margaret and Albe. I didn’t know Doris but you have certainly made me wish that I had. May she rest in peace. My prayers and thoughts are with Suzanne and the entire family.
Doris was a true inspiration to me as a new LCUSA board member. I will always remember her cheerfulness and smile. The write up by Margaret and Albe truly summarize Doris as a woman who not only served but inspired the Vincentian spirit in everyone that she was around. There is heartful sorrow for this loss. Prayers and thoughts continue for Suzanne and the Hoag Family.
Thank you, i am grateful to be reminded of the wonderful women who have led our organization. Doris’s grace, enthusiasm and energyare her gift to us. LCUSA is stronger and future oriented because of her leadership. My prayers and sympathy for the family.
Such a amazing woman. It was truly a gift to meet her. My prayers and thoughts are with Doris and the Hoag Family
Really appreciated to learn about LCUSA women of legacy, especially of inspiration.
Thank you very much for this wonderful summary and education!
Doris was always an open minded woman willing to think out of the box! Later when she was President of Ladies of Charity here in KC she drafted me and Sue Waldeck to head Boutique. We talked her into changing the format of how it was run with the vendors paying 30% of all they soldwith one checkout and it made the most money it had ever made! Always thinking about what and how we could benefit the poor, the most! She was quite a lady and will be missed by all who knew her.
My deepest sympathy to the Hoag family!
As I was not at the National Meeting this year, and I am no longer an LOC moderator in my new home (San Antonio, TX) I am in shock receiving this news. I always thought of Doris as the healthy one and John with more fragile health.
I had the honor to serve as the LCUSA moderator during Doris’ presidency. She was a joy to be with and had the gift to lead in a gentle way. We had many, many long phone conversations…she in KC or Arizona and me in Dallas. Albe and Margaret did a great job in helping Doris “come alive” for members who did not have the opportunity to know her personally. Thank you for doing this.
I certainly will pray for John and the family…I am sure this has been a great shock to them also.
Thank you Margaret and Albe for a terrific remembrance of Doris. I did not have the opportunity to meet her, but can easily imagine that her daughter Suzanne is cut from the same cloth and LCUSA will again be benefitting from Doris’ spirit.