HAMMONTON – King Lion Sal Velardi presided over the evening’s review of all the community and sight projects the Lions have been involved in during the year. Club activities included participation in the Red, White & Blueberry Festival, National Night Out, Blueberry Crossing Fall Fest, the ALS Walk in Ocean City, Field of Dreams, Adopt-A-Road, and honoring the Citizen of the Year, Paul Galletta. The club donated food to the local food pantries each month, helped needy families with free eye care and families in the community that had special needs and purchased flowers for downtown Hammonton. Donations included $ 500 toward painting the Historical Society building $250 to Richard Stockton Foundation, $500 to Covenant House in Atlantic City, $1000 to Field of Dreams, the president’s project; $500 to St. Vincent de Paul food pantry and $500 to the Presbyterian Church food pantry, and $1,000 to the Hammonton Cancer Foundation for their walk. The club also donated to district and state sight projects and LCIF. Donations totaled close to $14,000.
The club was able to raise money to support these projects and programs through their main fundraiser, the Great Cash Giveaway, White Cane, Silver Coin nights, Marcello’s Partners in Service program and the Red, White & Blueberry Festival. King Lion Sal acknowledged the generous support of the people and businesses of Hammonton. He thanked the Lions for all their dedication and hard work during the year and credited them for having such a successful club year. Recognitions were given to officers and committee chairpersons. Special awards recognizing Supporting Lions were given to Alan and Ann Cicatiello, Norma Caruso, Tom Alvino, John Wiessner, and Frank Johnson. President Awards were given to Lions MaryAnn Ragone and Loretta Rehmann. The Lion of the Year award was presented to Lion Lisa DeKlerk.
PDG Bob DeLambily installed the incoming officers: Lion Tamer, Carol Orsi; Tail Twister, John DeKlerk; Treasurer Sue Milazzo, Secretary Lisa Frederico, 1st VP Linda Goff and 2nd VP MaryAnn Ragone. PCC Arthur Orsi was honored to install his daughter, Lisa DeKlerk as president.
President Sal Velardi presented DeKlerk with the gavel and president’s pin, and she presented him with the Past President’s plaque and pin for his outstanding leadership and service as the club’s King Lion.
President Elect Lisa DeKlerk spoke to the club about her experiences with the Hammonton Lions from when she was child. She recalled some great club projects during that time. Her goals this year are to continue to encourage veteran Lions to mentor new Lions and get them involved in club activities and to encourage new ideas and start some new traditions. She ended with “ … it is my honor and privilege to serve as your president and know that I have your full support. Let us proudly serve together this coming year keeping in mind the incoming International President’s program theme: Harmony, Dignity, Humanity.”