Lions Honour Volunteer Efforts

Westport Lions Roar

By Lion Bob Reddick

Kevin and Rose Kardash (centre) were presented with a plaque of appreciation for their many years of service to the Westport Lions Club at the Thousand Islands Playhouse.

Lion Rick Warriner (left) receiving the prestigious Melvin Jones Fellowship Award from President Michael Harris (right).

In the words of President Michael Harris, “Presenting awards is one of the most pleasant tasks of being president.  So many people work so hard in this club that giving out awards is both easy to find deserving cases but also risks missing out on others.  I very much appreciate all the work that membership has done to make our club very successful.”

As the Lions’ year ends,The Westport Lions Club recognized outstanding contributions to the community at our annual awards night on June 8. 

Volunteers Pat Reddick and Janet Mulville were presented with plaques of appreciation for their many years of service to the Westport Lions Club.  Both women have been involved in club activities long before the Westport Lions gave official status to club volunteers.

Lion Rick Warriner and charitable organizer Ken Rose were honoured by receiving the prestigious Melvin Jones Fellowship.  Lion Rick and Ken are the seventh and eighth individuals in the 76-year history of the club to win this award.  Other honourees are Lions Wayne Bent, Jim McGlade, Marty Hawkins, Gary Warriner, David Blair, and volunteer Lucille Bresee.

The worldwide Melvin Jones Fellowship, named after Melvin Jones, the founder of Lions, is the highest form of recognition and embodies the humanitarian ideas and purpose of Lionism. 

The Melvin Jones Fellowship Award was created in 1973 to recognize individuals who display qualities such as generosity, compassion, and concern for the less fortunate.  It is unlike other Lions awards that acknowledge specific accomplishments.  The fellowship is open to non-Lions and can be awarded posthumously. 

Lion Rick Warriner has been a stalwart member of the Westport Lions Club for 34 years, joining the club in 1988.  Rick has been supportive and organized many Lion events over the years, most recently a successful fish fry.  Congratulations Rick for this well-deserved honour.

Ken Rose received the Melvin Jones Award in recognition of his significant service to our community.  Lion Marty Hawkins in his presentation remarks stated, “Ken is a wonderful man, with exceptional talents and a great big heart.  He does lots of things that no one knows about.  Ken started Pay It Forward with a pizza during the pandemic.”    This program encourages residents to pay it forward by providing pizza to deserving people in the community. 

Also, Ken initiated Westport Shares which provides emergency funds for people in urgent need. Both endeavours have provided relief and joy to people during tough times. 

Ken is currently working on obtaining a much-needed senior residence for Westport.  The Westport Lions congratulates Ken for receiving the Melvin Jones Fellowship Award and the club wishes him success on future projects. 

Lion Larry Arsenault received the President’s Appreciation Award.  Larry investigated, proposed, and implemented a new investment vehicle which will place the club in better long-term financial shape.  In addition, Lion Larry addressed several financial, legal and insurance issues that put the club in a stronger operating position.  Together with treasurer, Gary Warriner, the club has financial systems in place to ensure the smooth operation of the club’s finances.

The Lion of the Year Award went to Lion Jim Scala.  Jim’s vision and hard work resulted in the Reuse and Recycle Centre being a resounding triumph.  The centre is not only a financial success, but also strengthens the club by engaging membership and volunteers, recruiting new members, and giving the club a storefront presence to promote club initiatives.

The Westport Lions is recognized as being one of the top clubs in District A-4. This is a direct result of our active membership and volunteer group especially

our deserving award recipients and the support of our wonderful community.

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