Lions Clubs International



About Lions Clubs International - A Little History

The International Association of Lions Clubs began as the dream of Chicago businessman Melvin Jones. Melvin Jones was born in 1879; in 1913 he formed his own Insurance agency.

He joined a local businessmen's luncheon group and asked: - "What if these men, who are successful because of their drive, intelligence and ambition, were to put their talents to work improving their communities?"

At his invitation, delegates from men's clubs met in Chicago to lay the groundwork for such an organization and on June 7, 1917, Lions Clubs International was born. Clubs were not to be social in nature nor were members permitted to promote their own business interests.

Jones eventually devoted himself full time to Lions International.

It was under his dynamic leadership that Lions Clubs earned the prestige necessary to attract civic-minded members. The association's founder was also recognized as a leader outside the association. One of his greatest honours was in 1945 when he represented Lions Clubs International as a consultant in San Francisco, California, at the organization of the United Nations.

In 1925, Helen Keller addressed the Lions international convention in Cedar Point, Ohio, USA. She challenged Lions to become "knights of the blind in the crusade against darkness." From this time, Lions clubs have been actively involved in service to the blind and visually impaired.

Melvin Jones' personal code was "YOU CAN'T GET VERY FAR UNTIL YOU START DOING SOMETHING FOR SOMEBODY ELSE". This became a guiding principle for public-spirited people the world over. He died in 1961 at 82 years of age.

See for more information on the Lions.




Melvin Jones, Founder 1913


Helen Keller



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