Lions Club legacy continues with new president David Lovell

Published 6:00 am Wednesday, July 5, 2023

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The Greenville Lions Club welcomed their newest president for the 2023-2024 term, David Lovell, general manager of The Greenville Advocate. Lovell has been a member of the Lions Club for two years, acting as vice president last year. The new president said he has high hopes for the club’s mission and is passionate about being an asset to the Greenville community.

“I’m glad to serve and support the community,” shared Lovell. “As president I want to focus on how we can get more involved locally, have more outreach, and raise more money for donations.”

The Lions Club is an international club that was founded over 100 years ago in 1917. There are approximately 1.4 million members within 50,000 clubs in over 200 countries. The Lions vision aims for members to be global leaders in their community through humanitarian service. 

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Each Lions Club has its own service focus, but the five global causes of interest are diabetes, environment, hunger, vision, and childhood cancer. The Greenville club’s main mission is vision, and was chartered in 1928 serving the community and Lions Club International for 95 years. 

The Advocate has always had a staff member in the Lions Club in Greenville, Lovell shared. The longest standing Greenville Lions member of 66 years, Eugene ‘Gene’ Hardin, Jr., served as editor of The Advocate for 27 years before it was sold to Boone Newspapers in 1994. Lovell is proud to carry on this legacy as a Lions member. 

“Boone Newspapers has always encouraged the staff in joining local organizations and fulfilling your civic duties,” said Lovell. “I wanted to be involved, it’s a great group of people and I’ve enjoyed my time with them. It has helped me grow professionally and I want to continue to support the people of Greenville through the Lions Club.”

Ricky Cargile, current Lions secretary, treasurer, and member of 37 years, shared that the Lions were able to donate a total of $12,000 this past year to different local organizations. These organizations include: Safe Harbor, Raptors Ball Team, Butler County Bama Club, Greenville Library, Greenville High School JROTC, Greenville High School Band, Alabama Lions Sight, Southeastern Guide Dogs, Camp Seale Harris, Lions EyeGlass Recycling, and Lions Club International Foundation.

The club provided 10 members of the Greenville community with eye exams and glasses, and donated gas money for people traveling to the Eye Clinic in Birmingham. 

“We couldn’t have done it without the great support of our great community with our fundraisers,” said Cargile. 

Community members can help the Lions in their efforts by supporting their yearly fundraisers Radio Day, Ugly Man Contest, Memorial Day program, their BBQ Sales, and their food booth at the Christmas Parade.

Radio Day, in late October, is a time for businesses to have live advertisements on Q94 radio station. The Lions members promote the purchased ads live all day on the station and the proceeds go towards their donations fund. 

The Ugly Man Contest is a fun and humorous way for the community to aid the Lions. Three to five upstanding male community members are selected to participate in the bidding war for the title. The voting is online and every donation made counts as a vote for a contestant. The winner of The Ugly Man title gets to ride on a toilet seat throne in the Christmas parade.

Last year’s winner, Benjamin Faulkenberry, funeral director of Dunklin Funeral Home, shared that he wears the title proudly, and that he had an amazing time being a part of the fundraiser, and encourages the community to join in on the fun this coming year. Lovell shared that Benjamin raised a lot of money for the fundraiser last year and that he can’t thank him enough. 

“David is a phenomenal individual that goes above and beyond,” said Faulkenberry, “I know that if I were to need anything from The Advocate I could call him right now and he would do whatever he could to help me. He will do a great job as president of the Lions Club and they have Dunklin Funeral’s support.”

Lovell shared that another big focus for the Lions Club this year is to adopt 11 new members. They are looking for members with a servant’s heart and something new to add to the group, whether that is through their business or their willingness to truly be hands-on in all the club’s activities. 

The club meets every Monday at lunch, and is usually catered by Bec Duncan with Nanny’s Fine Dining. They have a guest speaker from the community each week to make connections, learn about different causes, and see where they can help. If interested in joining the club, contact Lovell at 382-3112 and attend a meeting. 

“The Greenville club always does a great job in recruiting members as well as serving the community! This club is the third oldest club in the district, and I am proud of the way they serve my hometown,” said Philip Box, the District Governor for 34C. 

Lovell hopes to be a Lion as long as he can. He appreciates each member, their support, and how they have tirelessly served the community long before he joined the club. 

“This year I want to recruit new Lions, focus on growing as a club, and continue to do more civic duties,” shared Lovell. “We can always do more, and we can always do better.”