Lions mark milestone
By Tessa Hoffman
THE fact the Lismore Lions have served the community for 60 years is indisputable.
And now it's set in stone well, concrete actually. The Lismore City Council yesterday set a plaque into the footpath outside Mary Gilhooleys pub in Lismore's CBD to commemorate the 60th anniversary of Australia's original Lions Club.
Mary Gilhooleys was formerly the Commercial Hotel, the club's original home.
Lismore Lions Club was established in 1947. Its mission is to serve the community by fundraising to provide services.
While early Lions projects included building a Scout hall and St Vincent's Hospital's 'little shop', more recent contributions include equipping the Lismore Base Hospital's renal unit and eye unit and projects at St Vincent's. The club last year contributed around $26,000 to local projects.
Lismore Lions Club founder William (Bill) Tresise was a 'self-made man' who had a vision, according to his son, Max who is in town for tonight's 60th anniversary celebrations at the Lismore Workers Club.
Max said while his father owned a plastering business, his real passion was community work, which he carried through the Apex Club.
When at age 40 Bill was no longer eligible to be an Apex member, he was not about to give up the community service role that 'was his life'.
Instead, he gathered 21 Lismore businessmen and started the Lismore Lions, inspired by a visit to the US where the organisation was already well established.
Bill passed away in 1975, his legacy lives on. Today there are more than 1200 Lions clubs in Australia.