Members of the King City Lions Club stay busy all year round serving people in both the local community and around the world through a myriad of programs, but once a year, they pause to celebrate, award members who have made extraordinary contributions and swear in new officers.
This year's annual banquet was held June 10 at the King City Clubhouse, where outgoing President Scott Stierle led the ceremony and recapped the year's accomplishments.
"The year 2017 is the centennial of Lions Clubs International, and it also is the year of our club's 50th anniversary," Stierle said. "June 27 is Helen Keller's birthday, and in 1925 she challenged the Lions to be the knights of the blind. For the past 92 years, we've done that with help from everyone.
"I can't remember another year since I've been in the club when we've had more members join in such a short period of time. It feels like a family, and some already are family. (Member) Bill Gerkin was best man at my wedding to Angela.
"I can't say how proud I am to say I am a King City Lion. I hear comments from other clubs in the district about how wonderful we are. We have such a great history, and I am proud to be your president during this centennial year."
The Lion of Year Award, which is given in recognition of outstanding and dedicated service to the club, went to Angela Stierle, who has been club secretary for the past three years and also worked on a variety of programs and activities. "Thank you for picking me as Lion of the Year," she said. "I've enjoyed every minute of it. Thanks to all of you who helped me through this year, and I look forward to helping you more in the future. Thank you for the award. God bless you."
Scott Stierle went on to say that "where there's a need, there's a Lion," and he recapped some of the activities the club has been involved with.
One is working with Just Compassion, which provides services and basic necessities to homeless people, and Stierle said the club set aside $200 to pay for glasses at $20 a pair. "We have already spent $80 and provided glasses for four homeless people," he said.
The club also has provided thousands of dollars in scholarships to Tigard and Tualatin high school graduating seniors over the past few years who are going to college or trade school.
"And the King City City Council approved putting up a street sign that honors the King City Lions Club," Stierle said. "These are just some of the strides we have been making."
He added, "The last two years I have served as district chaplain, and I will be chairperson for international relationships in the cabinet of our new district governor."
The Helen Keller Award went to Fae Lloyd, and Vision Fellowship Awards were presented from the Lions Sight & Hearing Foundation to Amber Dunn, Kim Dotson, Penny Peterson, Jim Armour, Elizabeth Lengyll and Ernie Henderson.
Spirit of Service Awards were presented to Alex Hieberg, Matt Vondracek, Phyllis Vanderzanden and Carlene Simmering.
Bill Gerkin presented the Progressive Melvin Jones award, named for the founder of Lions Clubs International, to Scott Stierle, for outstanding service to the club, including three terms as president.
"Scott has already received the Melvin Jones award, and now he has been voted to receive the Progressive Melvin Jones award," said Gerkin, who is the only other King City Lions Club member to serve as president three times and receive the progressive award.
Cindy Nemec, who was sworn in as the 2017-18 club president, said, "I'm looking forward to growing and learning from all of you and making the King City Lions Club even bigger and better than ever before. I've got big shoes to fill."
Also sworn in were Maiya Martin-Burbank as first vice president, Fae Lloyd as second vice president and Bill Gerkin as third vice president, Angela Stierle as secretary, Ron Baker as recording secretary and Mary Thibert as treasurer.
Michael Marchand and Scott Stierle are lion tamers; Rick Schwarzenberger is tail twister; Scott Stierle is membership chair; Linda Herb is program chair; and Jeannine Shelledy is contributions chair.
Others sworn in included one-year directors Doug Foster, Joyce Saari, Ernie Karlson, Tina Van Phong and Donna Kloster, and two-year directors Jerry Feickert, Linda Herb, Carleen Simmering and Verna Wyatt.