lions

Past Region Chairman J. Kevin Jones and Nevin Balliet shake hands at the latter’s installation dinner at Mattucci’s Cafe.

Mount Carmel Lions Club

The Mount Carmel Lions Club kicked off its 75th year with the election of Nevin Balliet as the new club president.

Nevin is president and head practitioner at Northeast Hearing Solutions Inc., Kulpmont., a company that specializes in hearing aids and tinnitus treatment.

Nevin, a graduate of Rotterdam University, is president of the Mount Carmel Area P.T.A. and active in other community organizations and his church.

He is also the co-founder of the Gift of Hearing Foundation, along with his wife, Denise, who is also a new Lion. The Balliets reside in Den Mar Gardens. They have two daughters, Marissa and Brynnlee.

Other club officers for the 2019-20 year are: First vice president, Ashley D’Andrea; second vice president, Denise Balliet; third vice president, Patricia Holmes; two-year directors, Joseph McDonnell and David Berezovske; one-year directors, Jeff Kanezo and J. Kevin Jones; recording secretary, Kerri Kondisko; treasurer, Kathleen Hoffman; tail twister, Harry Hudick Jr.; lion tamer, Mike Shannon; immediate past president, Shiela Zanella; membership, Mike Magennis; and webmaster, Jeff Kanezo.

The Lions Club started in Mount Carmel May 1, 1944. The election of the first officers was held in the Marble Hall Hotel with M.R. “Mike” Bodnar elected the first Lion president.

The 38-member club was chartered in Masonic Hall by Lions District Governor Fuhrman F. Bailey on June 22, 1944, with dignitaries from Pottsville, Schuylkill Haven, Milton, Mahanoy City, Kulpmont and other Lions Clubs assisting. The Kulpmont Lions Club was the sponsoring club.

Over the years, the Mount Carmel Lions Club has met in various locations: Pennsylvania Hotel (once the site of the Loyal Order of Moose and now a district judge office); Marble Hall Hotel (in the old Union National Bank building); Emilio’s (Skinny’s) Lounge (the former Marble Hall dining room); Mattucci’s Willow Street Cafe, which continues to be the spot for installations and Christmas dinners; Visintainers’ Restaurant, The Pine Burr Inn, The Mount Carmel Elks Club and the Fraternal Order Of Eagles Aerie 464, which is the present meeting place.

Past presidents are the late M.R. Bodnar, 1944-45; the late Robert Gibson, 1945-46; the late Elmer Albertini, 1946-47; the late Dr. Paul Schneider, 1947-48; the late Chester Schneider, 1948-49; the late Leo W. Schu, 1949-50; the late John Lapinski, 1950-51; the late Ralph Menapace, 1951-52; the late John Fracalossi, 1952-53; the late Enoch Kornaski, 1953-54; the late Edward Brosius, 1954-55; the late Edwin Witkoski, 1955-56; the late Clem Patrick, 1956-57; the later Norman Hect, 1957-58; the late Al Shulski, 1958-59; the late Anthony V. Miscavige, 1959-60; the late W. John Singer, 1960-61; the late Karl L. Schu, 1961-62; the late Alex Kozlowski, 1962-63; the late William Lippman, 1963-64; the late Max Sparber, 1964-65; the late Edwin Weisbond, 1965-66; the late Martin Solomon, 1966-67; the late Frank Miller, 1967-68; the late Donald Miller, 1968-69; the late John Kersten, 1969-70; the late John Kaminski, 1970-71; Ted Matlow, 1971-72; the late Gerald Malinowski, 1972-73; the late Lewis Stibitz, 1973-74; the late Joseph Kozlowski, 1974-75; the late John Shields, 1975-76; the late Robert Harring, 1976-77; the late Rodger McFall, 1977-78; Deno Langis, 1978-79; John Kondisko, 1979-80; Thomas J. Kondisko, 1980-81; the late Perino Bevivino, 1981-82; Albert Green, 1982-83; Donald Hildenbrand, 1983-84; J. Kevin Jones, 1984-85; Francis Filardo, 1985-86; Dennis Stone, 1986-87; the late Robert Marinelli, 1987-88; Bryant Ferrence, 1988-89; Ray W. Rothermel, 1989-90; Jeff Kanezo, 1990-91; Joseph McDonnell, 1991-92; the late Frank Alba, 1992-93; J. Kevin Jones, 1993-95; Jim Hogan, 1995-96; Michael Rovito, 1996-97; David Shulski, 1997-99; Christopher Kanezo, 1999-2000; Hugh A. Jones, 2000-02; the late Warren Altomare, 2002-04; Anthony Candelora, 2004-05; Tim Gundlach, 20015-06; Kevin Moncavage, 2006-08; Frank Zaleski, 2008-10; the late Michael Romance, 2010-11; Mike Shannon, 2011-12; Bob Lapinski, 2012-13; David Berezovske; 2013-14; Jeff Kanezo, 2014-15; Kerri Kondisko, 2015-16; J. Kevin Jones, 2016-17; and Shiela Zanella, 2017-18.

Over the years, the club has been active in the community, sponsoring a teener league baseball team, holiday deer display in the park, a borough Christmas tree, Santa Parade, eye care programs, Mike Terry Awards, MCA track banquet, Wightmans Dam, support of the Mount Carmel Library, and the popular Holiday Meals Program that has fed thousands of residents over the years, not to mention many other worthy projects.

The Lions meet at 6:30 p.m. on the second and fourth Thursdays at the Mount Carmel Eagles. If interested in membership, contact any member or go to www.mountcarmellions.org.

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