The Philomath Lions Club recently installed officers for 2021-22 with Shane McConnell taking over as the local organization’s president. Outgoing president Debbie Thorpe moves into the position of vice president with John G. Booker Jr., as secretary and Tom Wright as treasurer.
McConnell, president of American Home & Stone in Philomath, has been a Lions Club member for eight years.
Thorpe has long been active in the community with service on past boards for Philomath Community Services, Philomath Kiwanis, Philomath Area Chamber of Commerce and Philomath Lions. She recently celebrated 30 years as operator of the Philomath Liquor Store, which accepts used book donations that the Lions Club receives for its annual book sale, a major fundraiser for the organization.
Booker Jr., who works for Safeway and in athletic event security, has held the position of Lions vice president in the past. A resident of this vicinity for 30 years, Booker has been an active volunteer and in 2019, was recognized as a Samaritan Award recipient.
Wright, a Lions Club member since 2002, has lived in Philomath for 21 years. He is a retired secondary and university-level teacher of 40 years. Wright is a Lions Club past president.
Lions Club International was founded in 1917 and has over 1.4 million members in over 47,000 local clubs in 200-plus countries. The Philomath Lions Club was chartered in 1948.
The local Philomath club produces a community calendar, conducts a fireworks sale each year and holds its popular book sale and garage sale each year at the rodeo grounds. Lions Club members also serve breakfast at the Philomath Frolic & Rodeo, breakfast/lunch at the Corvallis Auto Swap Meet and burgers at Music in the Park.
Contributions out of the fundraisers stay local with programs that include the Philomath flower basket program, Santa and holiday lighting at the local library, the community Easter egg hunt and scholarships for graduating high school seniors.
The Lions Club also provides financial support to the Philomath Youth Activities Club, Philomath Food Bank, Philomath Elementary’s music program, Philomath High’s robotics program and the PHS senior all-night party.
Lions Club International is also known for collecting, refurbishing and redistributing used eyeglasses to those in need.For those interested in supporting their community, membership information is available online at www.lionsclubs.org or by contacting Thorpe at the Philomath Liquor Store at 1805 Main St., or by calling 541-929-3313.