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Gideon selected to state office


News Staff Writer

When Bub Gideons was elected District Governor for Alabama Lions District C in 2020, he figured he had climbed just about as high as he could on the organization’s state ladder. Now there’s no doubt he has advanced that far.
Gideons was elected statewide as the next Council Chair of the Alabama Lions Clubs International at the group’s state convention, held recently in Prattville.
The local realtor said the honor caught him a little unaware.
“I was kind of surprised because District A and B are more the central part of the state, and clubs like Montgomery and some of the others have 100 or 200 members,” he said. “Delegates from around the state voted, and I’m now council chair of Alabama Lions International.”
Gideons’ duties as District Governor required him to travel to all 26 Lions clubs in Lower Alabama. Now, his duties are more limited, geographically, but even more important.
“This is the highest you can go in state Lionism, as they say; you have to go international to hold a higher office,” he explained. “There’s a little less traveling; I don’t have to hit every club in the district now. I will have to chair four council of governors meetings a year.”
Among his duties, Gideons will set the respective agenda for each of those meetings, during which he will mediate discussions among the trio of District Governors on various state projects, plans for district conventions, ways to increase membership and other issues.
He reiterated that it took a minute or two for the selection to sink in, since he is believed to be the first Lower Alabama Lion to hold the position.
“I don’t know that anybody from down here has ever been selected for that,” he said. “Hellen Keller was born and raised in District A, and we all support keeping her house in good repair. There were lots of delegates from up there, so with politics and everything, I was really surprised.”
He noted that the Atmore club and area have made a significant impact on Lions members statewide in recent years.
“Our district down here did well this year in raising new clubs and things like that,” he said. “Maybe that’s why [he was elected], but I’m happy no matter what it was. I’m glad to represent Atmore, and everywhere I go, I talk about Atmore. The charities and other service projects are the main thing, but everybody knows now that Atmore is on the map.”
This year’s convention was one of the best-ever for local Lions, he pointed out.
“It was really great this time because Atmore was all over the agenda,” he said. “I nominated a local person, and for our non-Lion award, I pulled out the Tribe, and Stephanie Bryan won [see separate story, this edition]. We had a good state meeting as far as representing our part of the state.”
Recognition of the local club began in earnest when the state Lions convention was held here last year.
“A few years ago, we did a district convention that did so well, they wanted us to do the state convention,” said Gideons. “We have a lot of young people in our club, and they came up with special tablecloths and chair covers, things like that. Everything was presented on a silver platter, not on Styrofoam. Plus, they could go to a movie, and I’m sure a few visited the casino. They really liked it.”
The recent chartering of the Atmore Yellow Hats Lions Club gave the city a second club, a distinction in which most other cities do not share.
“That made them pay some attention to us,” Gideons said. “There was a lot of activity coming out of Atmore. As I said, it was a pretty good year.”
He added he is pleased to serve as chairman of the council of governors, a position for which service to mankind is the only compensation.
“I don’t get paid; I don’t get a pink Cadillac, like Mary Kay,” he laughed. “But if I was going to do it, it was better to do it now while I still have the energy. It’s a pleasure to serve, and it’s going to be fun.