Pignatara, Lee named to Lions Club Hall of Fame

By Jason A. Smith
Times Correspondent

The McDonough Lions Club recently recognized two longtime members who earned high honors for their years of service to the organization.

L. to r.: Kelly Lee and Patrick Pignataro, two McDonough Lions Club Members who have earned a distinguished honor for their years of service. Special photo

Kelly Lee and Patrick Pignataro were inducted into the Lions Club Hall of Fame March 20.

Pignataro, 61, currently serves as the president of the McDonough club. The retired educator has been affiliated with various Lions Clubs in Georgia over the past 33 years. He is a past district governor for the Lions Club and has served as as a director of the Georgia Lions Lighthouse.

“I was inducted into Lionism from the Hinesville, Ga., Lions Club,” says Pignataro. “I have been a member of many clubs in my lifetime -- Golden Isles Lions Club, Woodbine Lions Club, Kingsland Lions Club, and the Griffin Lions Club -- before transferring to the McDonough Lions Club two years ago. I have lived along coastal Georgia since 1977 until 10 years ago.”

Pignataro adds that he was a member of the Sun City Lions Club in Spalding County from 2008-2013, when he and his wife Janet – also a Lions Club member -- moved to The Retreat at Westridge in McDonough.

“Life is better in Henry County!” he says.

Pignataro is also a Melvin Jones Fellow – the highest honor within Lions Clubs International --named for the founder of the organization.

Lee, 65, is the president of L & M Business Forms in McDon-ough, and a Melvin Jones Fellow with 43 years’ experience in the Lions Club. Lee has held all leadership positions in the club as well as being board member and a “Tail Twister.”

“That’s the person who gets up at the beginning of the meeting and tries to give some humor at the beginning to get people relaxed,” he says.

Lee first got involved with the Lions Club when he came to McDonough in the 1970s. One reason he did so, he says, is that it gave him a chance to work with local business people.

“It also gave me an opportunity to work with our charities and the organizations that we support,” says Lee.

He says he was excited to garner a spot in the Hall of Fame.

“It was quite an honor,” says Lee. “We only have four in our entire club, and I’m proud to be one of those four.”