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Lions elect first female president

Not only is the Lions Club of Detroit Lakes celebrating its 50th year next month, it is also swearing in its first woman leader.

"I feel honored to be the first female president," said Debbie Haugen. "There are other women involved (in Lions), so hopefully we'll have another in the future."

Haugen has been with the service organization for three years. She has served as 2nd vice president and 1st vice president, and as of July, president. She succeeds Del Bergseth as president. Doug Friendshuh will take her position as 1st vice president.

Haugen said she joined Lions to "help the community. That's our motto, we serve."

During her first year with the club, she joined Lions on a trip to Mazatlan to help fit needy people with eyeglasses, a trip the Lions have been doing annually and are now adding a destination of Cabo San Lucas as well. She said she plans to go to Mazatlan again in March.

Haugen said she's not certain about all of her tasks as president, "I'm learning this," but some include lining up monthly speakers at meetings, volunteer work and screening donation requests.

The lions are also involved in raising money at WE Fest by having a dunk tank onsite and selling aerial photos of the campgrounds.

While the club turns 50 in July, members are holding off on the celebration until September, when they are planning a dinner for various members of the community.