Lions International logoCentennial logo
Lions Of South Dakota
  District  5 SE
Marie Anne Ben
5SE DG Lion Marie Anne Ben 
Vermillon, SD
(605) 670-0673
South Dakota flag

Upcoming Events Reminder!!

WELCOME To Lions District 5SE

We are located on the eastern side of South Dakota; part of the MD5 District. We currently have 47 Lions, 3 Liones Clubs, as well as 1257 members in the District. 
   Our District Governor for the Lions Year 2018-2019 is Lion Marie Anne Ben

Greetings fellow Lions! Though this year is through its first quarter, your club members should be engaged in another year faithfully serving your community.

The clubs of 5SE are to send representatives to the district business meetings to share ideas, discuss concerns and future initiatives for the district. One district business meeting is held during the 5SE Fall Forum (that concluded on Saturday, September 29, 2018) and the other at the South Dakota Lions State Convention location which this year will be in Spearfish on Saturday, January 19, 2019. Participating in the discussions and voting on the position that the district will take is one very important reason to attend the gatherings and district business meetings as many important items are decided that affect our entire district. Other discussions about district business are conducted at zone meetings as well.

During the 2018 Fall Forum that was held in Groton, SD, an item presented was the idea of moving our state convention and our Fall Forum to different times of the year.  The proposal discussed moving the state convention from January to sometime in the fall, approximately September or October, and then moving the Fall Forum from the fall to the springtime in March or April.

The proposal generated a great deal of discussion, both for and against the motion.  The proponents of this change sited several reason for consideration.  This included, in no particular order of importance:

• Attendance at the Fall Forum is lacking.  The idea is to make the forum more inviting to more Lions and to concentrate more on Leadership and Officer Training.  The spring of the year is the ideal time for this type of training for both incoming officers and new club members.  There would continue to be motivational speakers and the exchange and sharing of ideas with fellow Lions. 

• When Lions return from the state convention, they are excited to serve their communities with new ideas and a revived Lions spirit.  The state convention would continue to have expanded opportunities of learning and sharing with all the Lions of South Dakota.  This develops excitement at the beginning of the year rather than half way through the year. 
• There are a multitude of activities happening in January including sporting activities, other school activities (band, orchestra, speech and debate, etc).  Yes, there are activities in the fall also; but not nearly as many.

• Weather is a factor.  Even though we haven’t had to cancel a state convention in recent memory, the weather has made travel to and from a challenge.  The weather in the fall is most certainly better than in January.

• Lastly, District 5SE leadership is confident that District 5SW will be approving a very similar proposal at their Fall Rally.  Not that we need to blindly follow 5SW, but if they choose to host their state convention in the fall and 5SE hosts a state convention in January, the Lions of South Dakota will have a dilemma since the districts in South Dakota alternate hosting the state convention. 

Opponents sited several concerns as well.  Some of these are:

• The fall conflicts with harvest for the farmers and deer/ pheasant hunting.  We would be limiting our attendance for those groups.

• We have had very few issues with the weather in past years.  Weather can be a challenge in the fall, too.

• Tradition is important to Lions.  Our winter state convention is unique and gives South Dakota Lions something few other states have.

• The Fall Forum is a meeting for motivational and Lions related speakers, not for leadership and officer training.  If training is needed, we can have additional training meetings in the spring.

As you can see, whether or not to move the state convention to the fall is an important decision and will be decided at the state convention in Spearfish in January.  Your input and your attendance to participate in the ensuing vote is very important. Be sure to watch for the registration forms and be sure that you and your club is represented.

Should our District try this new concept for a few years?  Would this time change allow you to attend either of the state and district gatherings?  Do you believe this is a positive change for the Lions of South Dakota? What is your club’s input to this decision?

Please talk this over with your club membership.  If you have any questions or concerns, please email or call 1st VDG John Emmett at or 605 2284075 or DG Marie Anne Ben at or 605 658-6282.

Attend the 5SE/5SW State Convention ( January 18-19, 2019 in Spearfish) to vote on this proposal.

Yours in Service, Vision and Hope,

5SE DG Marie Anne Ben