Born on a farm in Wellington County, Ontario, Lois Thompson has been involved in Softball in Aurora for more than five decades. While serving in an administrative role with the Royal Canadian Air Force (R.C.A.F) in 1959 in Trenton, Ontario, Lois spent her downtime playing softball on the R.C.A.F. team. Later in the 1960s upon moving to Aurora, she became an active player locally in the Aurora Ladies Softball league with the Doane Hall Pharmacy team.
It was during the 1970s when her own daughters began to play softball that Lois felt the drive to volunteer, first being a part of the introduction of T-Ball to the Aurora Minor Ball system. In 1977, one of her daughters joined the Aurora Diggers Bantam team, and Lois recognized the need for the team to expand its reach. She, along with some colleagues, founded the Aurora Diggers Girls Softball Association, which was able to promote the sport at a high level, helping with equipment, coaching, and finances. As the first and to date only Treasurer of the Diggers Association, Lois has been an integral part of the institution’s success and in particular their growth into a House League in 2009.
Lois recognized when a role had to be filled and would undertake it herself, motivating others to help along the way. Her role with the Diggers expanded with their success, and she began to attend the Provincial Women’s Softball Association (P.W.S.A.) meetings – eventually earning an appointment with them and beginning a 25-year term on their Board of Directors. Concurrently, Lois identified the need for a regional league and was a founding member of the North York Women’s Softball League, becoming the treasurer and remaining with them for nearly 20 years.
Lois’ influence in softball expanded in geographic area from Aurora to the entire province, not only with her involvement in the P.W.S.A, but also with Softball Ontario, where she was part of the committee overseeing the province’s team entry into the Canada Games. Her role grew here as well, and she was team Manager for 12 years, leading Ontario’s Women’s Softball team to silver in 1997, gold in 2001, and silver again in 2005.
“The kids’ enjoyment and the game was more important than the people running it. Kids were the goal, not the money”
Lois has been honoured time and again for her years of dedicated service to the many
associations and institutions she has been a part of during her five decades in the softball world. As early as 1986, the Town of Aurora recognized her ongoing contribution to the Town’s sport community with the coveted Bob Harman Memorial Award. She has been recognized multiple times by the P.W.S.A.: as the Volunteer of the Year in 1995, for Outstanding Volunteer Commitment in 2001, for Outstanding Service in 2004, and for 25 years of service in 2010. Finally in 2016 she received the prestigious Rose Hodgson Award for “Service to Softball – Above and Beyond,” an award that recognizes contributions “beyond usual expectations.” Such terms truly define the kind of service that Lois devoted many years to the Ontario softball community.
Other organizations have also recognized Lois’ efforts, notably in 2006 the Sport Alliance of Ontario honoured her with the Rolf Lund “Jule Nisse Award” for her commitment to sport “from playground to podium.” The Province of Ontario recognized her non-stop volunteerism many times and awarded Lois no fewer than six Volunteer Service Awards for crossing various milestones with the P.W.S.A. and Softball Ontario. During National Volunteer Week in 2013, Lois received an award for Outstanding Volunteer Achievement from MP Lois Brown, on behalf of the Federal Government.
This is not Lois’ first entry into a Hall of Fame, having been inducted in 2017 to the Softball Ontario Hall of Fame in Toronto in the Builder category.
The Town of Aurora again recognized Lois’ constant contribution to the community with a 40-year Volunteer Service Award, presented in 2018 by Mayor Geoffrey Dawe.
In recognition of her lifelong contribution to the development of Girls’ Softball in Aurora and Ontario at large, we are proud to welcome Lois Thompson as part of the 2021 inductees into the Aurora Sports Hall of Fame.