RI Theme "Kindle the Spark Within"


Holmes was born in 1894, in Mapleton, Iowa, where his father was Bishop in the Methodist Church. By 1919 he had been editor and printer of a paper in Drain, Oregon; received his B.S. degree from the University of Oregon; served with the National Guard on the Mexican border, and as a lieutenant in the tank corps in France. In 1924 he graduated from the Northwestern Medical School, and later did post graduate study at Oxford, England.

He commenced his medical career in St. Helens, Oregon, leaving after five years for Portland where he practiced general surgery, and was clinical instructor of surgery at the University of Oregon Medical School for eight years. There he was Oregon YMCA Camps Medical Director, and Commodore of the Portland Yacht Club and President of the Columbia River Yachting Association.

In 1938 he moved to Kodiak where he lived until his death in August, 1964. He was prominent in the medical affairs of Alaska, and served as the President of the Alaska State Medical Association, and by that association recognized with the Robbins Community Service Award. Though he was a doctor, the people of Kodiak will probably remember him best as a citizen, quick to see the civic needs of the community and willing at all times to give of his time to fostering anything that in any way would benefit his beloved Kodiak. "He was not a crusader in the ordinary sense of the word, but he worked quietly, efficiently and effectively, and with great good humor in service clubs, and other groups in civic undertakings, ever willing to serve in any task he was given. He was filled with the business of living". (Kodiak Mirror)


He was three times President of the Rotary Club of Kodiak, President of the Kodiak School Board and of the Public Library Board, and a member of the Kodiak Planning Commission. He felt that education was important, but that the library was most Important.

His influence in Rotary in our District, both before and during his year as Governor, was inestimable. Two new clubs; Richmond and East Vancouver, were formed. His scholarly address to the clubs, attached hereto, made a deep impression.

The 1965 District Conference authorized a bronze placque "Dedicated to a Man in Depth of Service" be presented to the library in Kodiak, now designated the A. Holmes Johnson Library.

His widow, Fostina "Frostie", recently retired as librarian. His son, Dr. Robert, carries on the work of the clinic and participates actively in civic and professional affairs.