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Convention delegates elect Mancuso vice president, include nondiscrimination clause into bylaws

| Jun 28, 2019

Peter Mancuso elected vice president

Daniel Vigneron, Howald, Luxembourg, was elected president and Art Riley, Westminster, Maryland, USA, was elected president-elect of Kiwanis International at the 104th Annual Kiwanis International Convention at Walt Disney Resort® in Orlando. Peter J. Mancuso, North Bellmore, New York, USA, was elected vice president. All begin their new terms on October 1, 2019.

New trustees elected in OrlandoTrustees elected for the United States and Pacific Canada Region are:
  • Gary “Coop” Cooper, Fayetteville, North Carolina, USA
  • David W. Hurrelbrink, Kansas City, Kansas, USA
  • Cathy Szymanski, Erie, Pennsylvania, USA

Teh Cheng Lian “Lian” from Changkat Jong, Malaysia, was elected during the Asia-Pacific convention in March to represent the Asia-Pacific Region as a Kiwanis International trustee. Cheng Lian Teh passed away June 27. A replacement will be appointed according to the Kiwanis International bylaws.

The Kiwanis International-European Federation held its convention this past month and elected Gunnsteinn Björnsson from Sauðárkrókur, Iceland, to represent the Europe Region.  

Delegates approved a Safe Kids resolution proposed by the Kiwanis International Board. The resolution puts into writing something all Kiwanians believe: All children deserve to be safe.

A delegate at the 2019 Kiwanis International ConventionDelegates overwhelmingly approved an amendment to add a nondiscrimination clause, which was revised to include prohibiting discrimination based on age or sex including sexual orientation and gender identity into the Kiwanis International Bylaws. The amendment was submitted by the Kiwanis Club of East Geauga, Ohio, USA. The approved amendment reads: Kiwanis clubs shall not discriminate based upon race, color, creed, national origin, age or sex, including sexual orientation and gender identity, when considering membership or during any of their activities or operations and shall conduct business in compliance with local nondiscrimination laws.

A second proposed amendment, which was submitted by the Michigan District Board, would have allowed delegates to abstain from voting for the complete number of trustee offices to be filled. The amendment failed.

A new requirement for vice president, submitted by the Kiwanis Club of Venice, Florida, USA, would have required Kiwanis International trustees to have at least a one-year absence from the Kiwanis International Board before subsequently serving in the offices of vice president, president-elect, or president. The amendment failed.

An amendment calling for a new trustee seat for a member under the age of 50, submitted by the Kiwanis Club of Springfield-Downtown, Illinois, USA, was withdrawn. Its purpose was to establish a new seat on the Kiwanis International Board to be held by a person who is age 50 or under at the time of election.

A Family Membership Status amendment, submitted by the Pacific Northwest District and co-sponsored by the New England and Bermuda District Board, the Ohio District Board, the Southwest District Board, the Texas-Oklahoma District Board and the Kiwanis Club of North Brunswick, North Carolina, USA, failed. The amendment would have permanently adopted a new family membership status that provides a 50% discount on Kiwanis International dues and fees for qualifying members.

Kiwanis International Executive Director Stan SoderstromDuring the House of Delegates session, Kiwanis International Executive Director Stan Soderstrom challenged convention delegates to think beyond service and consider as well Kiwanis clubs’ long-term impact.

“Service is picking up trash at a park,” Soderstrom said. “Doing a good deed for an elderly person in your neighborhood. These are good things — but temporary things. That’s why I’d like to challenge us to think of Kiwanis not as a community-service organization — but a community impact organization. It’s impact that helps make us a part of people’s lives from an early age.”

Examples of Kiwanis service with impact include:

  • Service Leadership Programs where club members mentor kids, serve as examples and help youth develop skills that will last a lifetime. Youth programs also prompt students to begin their own journey of service and impact.
  • The Eliminate Project that has reduced by half the number of yearly deaths from MNT since Kiwanis joined the effort in 2010.  
  • The success of our campaign to eliminate Iodine Deficiency Disorders with 86 percent of the world’s population now having access to iodized table salt, decreasing these disorders among vulnerable populations.

Soderstrom challenged clubs to add magic to their clubs after the 2019 convention at Walt Disney World® Resort. Clubs, he said, should feel the inspiration, imagination and creativity associated with impacting children.

Vigneron has been a member of the Kiwanis Club of Vielsalm in Belgium for more than 32 years. He served twice as club president and once as governor of the Belgium-Luxembourg District. He also served as Kiwanis International-European Federation president and is a former Kiwanis International trustee.

Kiwanis International President-elect Designate Art RileyRiley began as a member of Key Club and has continued as a member of the Kiwanis Club of Westminster, Maryland, for 39 years. Additionally, he is a member of the Centennial Internet Club and the Kiwanis Club of State Line, Maryland. Riley’s leadership has been demonstrated as a Key Club lieutenant governor and numerous positions within the Capital District, for which he served as governor in 2007-08.   

During his tenure on the Kiwanis International Board, Riley was counselor to 12 Kiwanis districts and traveled to more than 30 districts.  Additionally, he and his wife, Vickie, participated in a site visit to Cambodia for The Eliminate Project.

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