The city mourns the death of former Mayor Arthur Holk, who passed away Saturday, March 13, 2021. Holk, who grew up in Foley and built a very successful business here, served as mayor from 1976 – 1996. Our condolences to his family.
Arthur Holk, 95 years old, of Magnolia Springs Alabama and longtime resident of Foley, Alabama passed away suddenly on Saturday, March 13th 2021 of a major stroke. Arthur was born to the late Margaret (Wooten) and late George Holk on October 13th, 1925 in their original family home located above the “Holk Grocery Store’ on the corner of Highway 59 and 98 in Foley. His parents had five boys – George (“Buster”), Herbert, Arthur, Harvey, and Floyd. In addition to being a local business owner, his father was the fifth Mayor for the City of Foley when Arthur was born. His parents eventually built their homeplace on the corner of Camphor and Hwy 59 only to be met by tragedy five years later when their beloved mother, Margaret, died of cancer leaving a single dad, George, with five boys ages 11, 9, 7, 5, and 3. George eventually remarried Eva Walker of Foley and they had three more boys – Fred, David, and Richard. Eva had a Master’s degree in early childhood psychology which was most definitely put to use raising eight boys! Arthur graduated Foley High School in 1945. After completing Auburn University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Agricultural Science in 1949, Holk returned to his hometown with his father’s inherent entrepreneurial spirit and deep-seated heart for public service. Arthur began a successful lifetime career in the insurance industry as the President and CEO of Baldwin Mutual Insurance Company and an Agent for State Farm Insurance where he ranked as a leading agent in Alabama, as well as, in the top 2% of all State Farm agents in the nation. True to his hard-working nature and innate love for business, Arthur could be found most days up until his death in his Baldwin Mutual office. Arthur was a true public servant and philanthropist. He contributed greatly to the history and development of the City of Foley through his political service and community involvement. In 1952, he was elected as Councilman where he served for twenty years before eventually following in his father’s footsteps becoming Foley’s fifteenth Mayor and serving another twenty years for the City of Foley. Arthur loved giving back to his community. He devoted countless hours volunteering and serving on the Boards of civic and business organizations including the Foley High School Board, Chairman and Director of the Riviera Utilities Board, the Colonial Bank Board, Director and President of Gulf Coast Title Insurance, Inc., the Mobile Land Records Board, President of the Gulf Shores Golf Club, Lifetime Member of the Auburn National Alumni Association Board, Charter Member and Past President of the Foley Rotary Club, President of the Baldwin County Auburn Alumni Association, Chairman of the Baldwin County Heart Fund, Chairman of the Baldwin County Crippled Children’s Society, Past President of the Baldwin County Shrine Club, Chairman of the State of Alabama Aeronautics Board, Past President of the Alabama League of Municipalities, Past Chairman of the South Baldwin Regional Medical Center Board, Past Chairman of the South Baldwin Health Foundation, and Past Chairman and current Board Member of the South Baldwin Healthcare Authority. His outstanding commitment to community service was recognized by Rotary International as a Paul Harris Fellow and the Lions Club as a Melvin Jones Fellow. Arthur’s lifetime commitment to education was recognized by Auburn University’s Samford Society and George Petrie Society. He held the honor of being the only two-time recipient of the South Baldwin Chamber of Commerce’s Free Enterprise Person of the Year award (1980 & 1996) which is given to a community leader with outstanding business accomplishments. Arthur was a great family man. His love story with his wife, the late “Fannie Jo” Holk, began on a first date to Fairhope in Dean Hanson’s brand new, red Dodge convertible in May 1950 and It continued as they joined the Methodist Church together that Fall then got married on December 3rd of that same year (1950) at the old Foley Methodist Church which was on the corner of Laurel Avenue (Highway 98) and Pine Street. They had two children – Frances and Andy. Arthur was a dedicated, loving father and devoted husband. He had an infectious laugh and was a great friend to many. He loved vehicles – especially Harley Davidsons, planes (had his pilot’s license), and boats (loved his Bertram boat named Frandy after his children). Arthur is survived by his daughter and son-in-law, Frances Holk-Jones and Carl Jones of Foley, AL; son, Andy Holk of Perdido Beach, AL; grandchildren, Grayson Moore (Allison), Drew Holk, andAlise “Starfish” Holk; and great-grandchildren Maxwell and William. He is preceded in death by his wife, Fannie Jo, granddaughter, Jennifer Moore and son-in-law, Neal Moore. Arthur had many relatives and friends that he held very dear including the Honorable Judge Tim and Sandy Russell, Brenda Ford, Margaret Roley, Tanya and David Blair, Richard and Pi Riemer. In fact, he and Richard made more than fifteen years of lasting memories in their weekly travels to Biloxi every Tuesday! Visitation will be held on Monday, March 15th from 10am until noon at the Foley Civic Center (407 East Laurel Avenue, Foley) and 2pm until 4pm at Saint Margaret of Scotland Catholic Church Parish Center (directly behind the church located at 601 West Laurel Avenue, Foley). Funeral services for Arthur will be held at Saint Margaret of Scotland Catholic Church (601 West Laurel Avenue, Foley) at 4pm. It will also be live streamed on the Saint Margaret of Scotland Facebook page @SaintMargaretofScotland. Memorials can be made to the Jennifer Claire Moore Foundation at P.O. Box 490 Foley, AL 36536 or South Baldwin Educational Foundation Arthur and Fannie Jo Holk Scholarship at P.O. Box 1600 Foley, AL 36536.