What do Olympian Hailey Wickenheiser, singer-songwriter and activist Buffy Sainte-Marie and humanitarian Lotta Hitschmanova all have in common?
They have all been included on a Kelowna paper’s list of 25 “bad ass” women who have been “fighting oppression, challenging cultural norms and advancing society.”
This would appear to be the most unusual honour or recognition that Lotta has ever been given, or is it?
Millions of Canadians have viewed Lotta as a concerned, almost revered “saintly” figure who urged people to take an interest in the lives of people in far off lands and offer compassion and active support.
At the same time, as Canadian publishing icon Stuart Keate noted in the 1970s, Lotta was a pioneering woman in a man’s world, and well deserved the nickname “the atomic mosquito.”
And to read a more in depth exploration of Lotta’s character, I would recommend Joy Thierry Llewellyn’s article: “Canada’s ‘Mother Teresa’ with attitude.”