After raising monarch butterflies in her primary classroom for 30 years, Barbara J. Hacking developed a special connection with them. Over the years, they have presented her with many life lessons in very interesting ways.

When she retired from teaching in 2012, the Monarch population had reached an all-time low and she now spends her time giving presentations and promoting the planting of Milkweed (the only food source for their caterpillars) and native nectar plants. She loves traveling with her husband, Mark and especially enjoys visiting the Mexican Monarch sanctuaries which she describes as “Heaven here on Earth”.

Barbara’s first book When a Butterfly Speaks…Whispered Life Lessons was written to alert people to the fact that Monarchs were a species at risk. As she wrote, the Monarchs began to return, creating many stories.

Barbara received The Sovereign’s Medal for Volunteers from the Right Honourable David Johnston, Governor General of Canada in 2017. She was also the recipient of the Ted Blowes Community Service Award and the James Anderson Award for coordinating the creation of the Ted Blowes Memorial Pollinator Peace Garden.