Kule, Peter and Doris

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Kule, Peter and Doris

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  • Kuleba, Petro
  • Radesh, Doris

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Dates of existence

b. 1921

History

Peter Kule (then Petro Kuleba) was born in Stratyn in what was the Poland but is now in the Rohatyn district of Ivano-Frankivsk province of Ukraine. He came to Canada with his mother and two brothers on December 28, 1938 through Halifax. At that time, his father already settled in Two Hills, Alberta. Peter completed elementary and intermediate school in Stratyn, and secondary school in Rohatyn. In January 1939 he started in grade 1 in a school in Two Hills, as he didn't know any English, and six months later he finished the school year in grade eight. In 1940, Peter moved to Edmonton, and was trained as an accountant. The training lasted five years, and while studying, he worked as a bus boy at the Hotel MacDonald.

Peter met Doris Radesh in 1943. Doris was born near Boian, Alberta in a family of Ukrainian immigrants Usten and Mary (nee Lupul) Radesh. She was one of ten children. Doris finished nine grades at the school in Boian, and later became an elementary school teacher after teacher training at the University of Alberta. Doris and Peter were married in 1944. Doris worked in rural schools, and then at the Beverly school in Edmonton until her retirement in 1974. Peter opened his office in Edmonton i 1945. In 1950, a Ukrainian friend John Peach joined him and the firm was renamed Kule and Peach. Peach retired in 1977, and Peter was joined by his cousin's son Ken Pasnak. In 1950, Peter started investing in real estate, specifically in hotel business; the investments were successful.

The Kules attended St. Josaphat Ukrainian Catholic Cathedral and were active in various community organizations: Ukrainian Catholic Brotherhood of Canada (Peter), Ukrainian Catholic Women's League of Canada (Doris), Ukrainian Professional and Businessmen's Club, and many others. Both Peter and Doris received numerous awards for their work, for example, Pope John Paul II proclaimed Peter a Knight of the Order of St. Gregory the Great in 1993, and he conferred upon Doris the Cross Pro Ecclesia et Pontifice.

Peter and Doris supported numerous Ukrainian heritage and religious organizations: Sheptytsky Institute of Eastern Christian Studies, Ukrainian Folklore Centre at the University of Alberta, Canadian Institute of Ukrainian Studies at the University of Alberta, the Ukrainian Resource and Development Centre at Grant MacEwan, Kule Institute of Advanced Studies, and many other.

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The biography is based on Natalie Kononenko's "Peter and Doris Kule: A Biographical Essay" in Champions of Philanthropy: Peter and Doris Kule and their Endowments edited by Serge Cipko and Natalie Kononenko, published by the Kule Endowment Group in 2009.

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