Category Archives: Lions of Illinois News

VDG Class Picture

These Lions are on the way to becoming District Governors in their districts throughout Illinois.  If you are interested in becoming a District Governor one day, you have the support and training before you take office.  The following picture is of the upcoming VDG group:

vdg classes 1 (3)

1A – Patricia Duda;   1BK – John Joseph Honiotes;  1CN – Ron Mueller; 1D – Steve Boettger; 1F – Allen Barack; 1G – Roger Fanning;  1H – Ray Parrish;              1M – Lori Bennett;         1J – John Hillard not pictured.   1CS has no candidate.

After a long day of classes, this is the MD1 Class of 2017-2018

LIF Sweepstakes

Norm Wilson

As I was reading through the material from the Sight & Sound Sweepstakes, I noticed a piece of information that pleasantly surprised me. In 2015, the Goal for District 1-M (actually the combined goals for 1-E & 1-L) was $8,960 (or 896 books of tickets sold.) Lions of District 1-M brought in $10,624.00 (over 1000 books of tickets sold.) What surprised me was, looking up and down the list, District 1-M was truly in a class by ourselves, as we were the ONLY district in the state that met our Sales Goal for 2015!
So congratulations Lions of District 1-M, and Thank you for helping the Lions of Illinois Foundation continue to provide all of the awesome services that you have provided through this fundraiser.
Now… for 2016! District 1-M has a goal this year of $13,000.00, or 1300 books of tickets. That sounds like a lot, until you realize that, if every member in the District were to sell one book of tickets and buy one book of tickets, we would CRUSH that goal!
So I encourage you to get out and sell the Sight and Sound tickets. Offer your friends, family, co-workers, and associates the opportunity to help provide Camp for Vision and Hearing Impaired kids, to help provide the Low Vision program, Mobile Hearing and Diabetic Retinopathy Screening Units, and all the other services of the Lions of Illinois Foundation… and possibly win some cash in the process!
If you would like me to come talk to your club about the Sight and Sound Sweepstakes, please let me know. Thanks for your help in making this another successful year for our District!

Lion Norm Wilson, Dist 1-M Sight & Sound Sweepstakes Coordinator, 217-822-6676


2016 East Central Walk for Sight

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Pictures above are from past Walk for Sight events –

There exists within this District a group of people who are dedicated to the mission of service.
For six years, they have collected donations, invited organizations to participate, and gathered together to play games, eat, listen to music, win prizes, get souvenirs, and to walk.
As each one walks, you can see that they are not just walking for the money. They are walking for someone they care about. Whether it’s a neighbor, a family member, a friend or someone they’ve never met before, these people are here to serve someone in need.
in six years, these dedicated, service-minded people have raised well over $40,000 toward programs and services to help their communities. They are among the shining stars of the greatest service organization in the world. You can join these shining stars and help raise funds for your projects and services while helping the blind and vision impaired.



Gear Up For Camp Lions

          Hi! I first want to thank the clubs that have supported our Lions camps in the past.  You helped over 200 sight or hearing challenged kids have a wonderful week enjoying activities at camp.  Many of these were first-timers and some of their parents were reluctant to see them go to camp.  But they all ended the week full of smiles.  They were proud of what they had accomplished and many are looking to return this summer.
          Now here is the first message:  At our camps, we have 240 spots.  Several went unfilled last year.  We have two camps near us: one near Bloomington and the other in Benton.  So we might as well fill these spots with 1M campers.  If you know a family that has a child that is hearing or sight challenged, here is an opportunity to bring joy into someone’s life.  Please note that the camper does not pay for the camp.  The Lions Foundation covers the cost and I bet that your club would even help the child get to camp if transportation is a problem.  But you can’t put this one off.  It is application time.  Contact the family and get on the foundation website to get the application or use the ones (included here in DOWNLOADS/FORMS) attached.  Fill it out, it’s not hard but now is the time!
          Message number two:  All that have visited a Lions camp or talked to a former camper say the experience is something special.  Each year Lions are helping over two hundred kids have the experience of their lives.  But this effort is not cheap.  Our Foundation is asking each club to consider the sponsorship of 1-3 campers at the rate of $525 per sponsorship.   Would you please take this information to your club and consider investing in these kids.  I’ve (Included HERE IN DOWNLOADS/FORMS) attached a form for this purpose.  It is last year’s but I’m sure it will still work.  Thanks for your consideration.
Lion Randall Ross
Lions Camp Coordinator
District 1M

A Letter from the Governor!

Christmas time is here and it is a time to reflect on our Blessings of which 1-M is a major Blessing. What a fantastic start for our District. A bit of a rocky start, having a few hurdles to cross but we have come together as ONE DISTRICT and got through them together! A great big THANK YOU to all who have stepped up and filled vacancies.

We are very fortunate to have a full slate of officers in line for our district and knowing you will continue to support them as you are supporting me reassures me that we came together as ONE DISTRICT! Thank you to all who took time to come to our first 1-M District Convention to make it a success. A special Thank you to Lion Ken Horn PDG. Thank you for taking time to elect our officers and vote on our Constitution.Thank you Lion Steve Frankenstein PDG and Lion Joyce Schroeder PDG/PFP. We have been working diligently behind the scenes finalizing all the important documents so we are recognized by the State of Illinois and the IRS as District 1-M a Non for profit organization. A special Thank you to Lion Brad Cash!

We have now come upon the Christmas Season and we feel fortunate to have been invited to several Christmas parties, just wish we could have made them all. Thank you to all that took the time and consideration to invite us. I hope this finds you all in the Christmas Spirit! First Lady PDG Jani and I (and Buddy Cabinet dog) want to wish all the Lions, Lioness and Leos of 1-M a Very Merry Christmas!!

Remember as Lions, Lioness and Leos we carry the Christmas Spirit with us all year long, giving unselfishly of ourselves so others lives will be better!

District Governor Kevin Mendenhall 1-M

Duffle’s for Dignity!

“Duffle’s for Dignity”

As partners-in-service of the 2015-16 Illinois Lions Service Project

Council of District Governors,

We assist whenever and wherever we can with our spouses’ activities in their year as Governor. In keeping with the Lions Club motto of “We Serve”, the District Governor’s spouses recently met with Lion Gail Anton, wife and partner-in-service for Council Chair Steve Anton, during the Council of Governor’s meeting in Morton, IL.

We brainstormed on all sorts of ideas as to what we wanted to do for the year and ended up with an excellent service project – “Duffle’s for Dignity” collecting duffle bags for foster care
children, which are durable and even more important they are collapsible and can be stored in
a drawer or small space on arrival. Many of these kids have very few possessions and end up carrying their belongings in paper or plastic trash bags.

We intend to work with foster care caseworkers throughout the state and court system in order to give them the duffle bags as the child travels through foster care homes. Our initial goal is 50 duffle bags. We will kick this off at our 2 nd Council meeting December 5 and will focus on District M and expand to other Districts from there. As August 30th – September 5th is Children’s Dignity Week for Lions Club International, it is a perfect\ project for our group to announce and to hold a kick-off for this project for the 2015-16 year.

We will be looking for ways to accept and distribute donations of duffle bags, but we also want to place some items inside, such as a stuffed animal and other special items. We have been advised that the best size is probably 32” for smaller children and 36” for older. To help fund the cost of this project, the partners-in-service will be putting together Christmas and all-occasion greeting card 10 packs for sale at Lions events. Watch for more on this exciting fundraising endeavor.

We will be featuring our project, along with other information, through this special section of the State Magazine. We will be featuring our progress to date, how many we have been able to help, and what you as fellow Lions can do to assist us. Watch for further information from your District, particularly from your District Governor’s spouse/partner-in-service.

Let’s see how we can contribute to the dignity of a foster child by providing him/her with a safe place in which to story their special treasures.

So who are the 2015-2016 Spouses? They are a group of wonderful caring people who want to reach out and help those in need. It is pleasure to introduce this great group of caring people: 1-A Lion Sue Zarada, 1-CN Lion Luanne Ragland, 1-CS Lion Jerry Luter, 1-D Lion Marcia Meyers, 1-F Lion Mary Reading, 1-G Lion Marsha Hamilton, 1-H Janet Breckon, 1-J Lion Pam Fowler, and 1-M PDG Lion Jani Mendenhall.

Have questions email Lion Gail Anton at Or contact any of the spouses in your Districts. Stay tuned for more info from us! We are just getting started……….

Lions Kidsight USA!

I hope that you’re having a wonderful summer. It’s hard to believe that only a year ago we began Lions KidSight USA. Now it’s my pleasure to offer you another update on our exciting initiative.
The Lions KidSight USA Committee has been busy. From developing suggested standards for screening and forming partnerships with outstanding manufacturers like Welch Allyn Spot and Plusoptix, to launching our website and Facebook page, a lot has happened in the past year. Here’s an overview of what’s new with Lions KidSight USA:
  • Social Media – The word is out. Our Facebook page is more popular than ever, with over 900 likes and nearly 1,600 impressions every week. If you haven’t already, take a moment to “like” the Lions KidSight USA Facebook page. It’s a great way to keep up-to-date with the initiative and to share your club’s screening activities with other Lions and your community.
  • KidSight USA Website – Our website has also received a warm welcome. A lot of information and resources are already available, and more updates are on the way to make it even easier to use. Stay tuned!
  • Data Management – Both the committee and LCI staff are working hard to research and implement a national data management system that will be easy for Lions in both clubs and districts to use. This is a big step that will help bring KidSight programs around the country together and help establish Lions as the leader in children’s vision screening and screening data. We’ll keep you posted on our progress.
  • Fall Vision Screenings – As summer winds down, it’s time to reach out to school districts and agencies to arrange fall screenings. Before you do, remember to make sure all of your equipment is clean and ready to go, all of your forms are updated with proper dates and that your supply is sufficient for the fall season.
  • Special Thanks – I want to extend a special thanks to the Lions of Oregon and Colorado. I had the opportunity to visit to the Oregon Lions Sight and Hearing Foundation, as well as the Colorado Lions KidSight Foundation in early June. Both programs are very active—last year Lions in Oregon screened 142,000 children, while Lions in Colorado screened 45,000—and I wanted to learn firsthand how they operate. While each program is unique in its approach, they are both doing wonderful work on behalf of Lions Clubs International and Lions KidSight USA.
As always, if you have any questions, suggestions, or if there is anything I can help you with, send me an email. And remember to share your success stories with us. We’d be honored to showcase your service on the Facebook page to let the world know what Lions are doing to preserve the sight of our children.
Thank you for all you are doing for the children in your communities and for Lions KidSight USA.
Dr. Edward V. Cordes, PID
Chair, Lions KidSight USA