Jim Prior honoured with Melvin Jones Fellowship - June 22, 2017
BY SHAWN LOUGHLIN
Jim Prior of Brussels has become the latest local Lions Club member to receive the Melvin Jones Fellowship, which is the highest form of recognition from Lions International.
Prior was honoured with the award last week at the club’s regular meeting with Lions Club member Paul Mutter introducing Prior and detailing his lengthy list of accomplishments.
Mutter says he surprised Prior with the award – telling him that a member of the club was receiving it, but not telling Prior that it was him. As part of the presentation, Prior was waiting to take pictures of the recipient when he realized he was the one being recognized with the award.
“The Melvin Jones Fellowship is the highest form of recognition from Lions International and embodies humanitarian ideals consistent with the nature and purpose of Lionism,” Mutter said in his presentation. “The recipients of this award are model Lions because of their exemplary service to their club and to the community.”
Prior now becomes only the second member of the Brussels Lions Club in its over-70-year history to win the award. Long-time member Jim Armstrong won it in 2014.
“I think you will agree that tonight’s recipient is one of the most humble individuals you will ever know. He approaches each task at hand with a passion and with painstaking care and attention to detail, yet never seeks attention for his efforts,” Mutter said to members of the club as part of his presentation.
“Over the years, he has given of his time to coach, to volunteer his time and to chair several committees both within our club and outside of our club, each of which has made Brussels and area a better place to live. This would include chairing the committee which made the facility we are gathered in this evening [the Brussels, Morris and Grey Community Centre] a reality.”
Mutter also mentioned in his presentation that Prior had been honoured by North Huron Publishing in winning its Citizen of the Year award for the Brussels area in 2010.
Those who nominated Prior listed his total commitment to Brussels as a reason he was nominated. Prior, however, said he felt strange receiving the award, wondering why his fellow residents would nominate him.
Prior has been a member of the Brussels Lions for 50 years, becoming a member in Canada’s Centennial year, 1967. He was president of the club in 1973/1974 and is now a life member of the club.
Mutter recognized Prior for his tireless work with the club’s annual Hockey Draw, the Elimination Draw and compiling the club’s regular newsletter, which Mutter said is one of the best in the area and has competed at the highest level of international Lions Clubs in Germany years ago.
Lions Zone Chair Fred De Boer was on hand to make the presentation.