History of the Indiana Lions Foundation
At the Council of Governors meeting on May 29, 1989 a new committee was formed to study the office needs for the Lions of Indiana. The committee was named the “Long Range Planning Committee” and was made up of five members; PID Carter Everage, DG Ray Enfield, DG Dave Fiandt, Lion Executive Secretary Reece Baughn, and State Comptroller PDG Lloyd Strickland. In April of 1990, attorney Dennis Grotrian and PDG Ken Bales also became members of the committee.
The committee met for several months and discussed various ideas and suggestions. During this time, one of the ideas considered was PID Norm Brennan’s offer of approximately two acres near the Indianapolis Airport and Interstate 465. There was considerable discussion on this idea and it was decided there needed to be an Indiana Lions State Office Committee formed to take on the project of establishing a new state office for the Lions of Indiana.
The State Council of Governors meeting on June 5, 1989 established a new state committee whose charge was to procure or build the building. The committee was not to exceed 12 members and a new state office building was not to cause an increase in the State Lions dues. Past International Director Carter Everage accepted the charge and began to gather around him a group of Lions to tackle the problem. Carter asked Lions from all the districts in Indiana to participate. On August 8, 1989, PID Everage assembled a group of Lions that were interested in working on the new office project. This group organized themselves with the following officers: PID Carter Everage, President (F); PDG Ken Bales, Vice President (E); PDG John Eley, Secretary (C); PDG Luther Bloomberg, Treasurer (A); Lion Dennis Grotrian, General Counsel (B). The following Lions were Directors of the committee: PDG Duane Targgart (B); PDG Jim Ashby (D); PDG J. D. Smith (E 2); PID Norm Brennan (F); PDG Ray Enfield (G); PID Bill Schooler (A); and ID Jim Cameron (G). The committee met for several months to discuss their authority and financial resources of acquiring a building and the capital this project would require for the State Office Building.
The first thing the committee decided to do was become a legal entity. To do this they became a Not-For-Profit Corporation in the State Of Indiana. The completion of this work gave birth to the Lions of Indiana Trust Fund (now The Lions of Indiana Foundation). This made it possible for the committee to accept tax-deductible donations, and it began to raise funds.
One member, PID Bill Schooler, recommended the formation of a trust and application for recognition under section 501(C)(3) of the U. S. Revenue Code. This corporation was formed in 1990, and an application for exemption from income taxes under Section 501 (C)(3) of the Internal Revenue code was filed and conditional approval for five years was received on February 13, 1991. This approval called for a review in five years. If it was determined that the exemption status was properly used, it would be made permanent. The Indiana Lions Trust Fund did obtain permanent status approval under Section 501 (C)(3), and it is now a public charitable trust. Gifts to the Fund are tax deductible as a charitable contribution.