Former Seabreeze High School teacher running for Lions Club international director position

Jacquie Tripp, who taught at Seabreeze for 15 years, will run against a candidate in Miami to move on to the next level on the elections during the Lions Multiple District convention in May.

Jacquie Tripp has been a Lions Club member since 1999. Photo courtesy of Jacquie Tripp
Jacquie Tripp has been a Lions Club member since 1999. Photo courtesy of Jacquie Tripp
Photo by Kimberly Tank
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For over 30 years, Jacquie Tripp has had a love for teaching. This passion has transcended into something more with the Ormond-by-the-Sea Lions Club.

Tripp is running for International Director of Lions Clubs, and in May, during the Lions Multiple District convention in Orlando, she will run against a candidate from Miami to move on to the next level, which involves an interview with an international board member. The candidates will then continue their campaign for international director.

“I’m trying to help the Lions Club get fresh ideas, get fresh members and do a full refresh; kind of like cleaning a closet and rearranging things,” Tripp said.

Tripp grew up in Omaha, Nebraska, where she graduated with her bachelor’s degree in elementary and special education at Kearney State University, and later her master’s degree in counseling and human development from Troy State University. She began teaching in 1984 and moved to Florida seven years later.

Tripp taught at Seabreeze High School for 15 years as a special education reading teacher and a guidance counselor. In 2016, she retired and moved to Cocoa Beach — though she continues to be an associate member of the Ormond-by-the-Sea Lions Club. After taking a few years off, Tripp decided she wasn’t done teaching and got a job at Gulfview Elementary School.

She joined the Lions Club in 1999. Throughout this time, she attended training sessions through Lions Club International and was licensed and certified as an instructor. She taught at an institute in Florida and surrounding states, and eventually was asked by the current international president to be an instructor for district governors.

Jacquie Tripp with Alfie at Alfie's restaurant in Ormond By the Sea. Photo courtesy of Jacquie Tripp

“In her 20-plus years of being a member, she has not missed a meeting and has perfect attendance which is remarkable," said Bobbie Cheh, a fellow Lions Club member. "She’s a very dedicated person, her persona, her attitude, she’s a teacher by trade and she enjoys teaching people, and in Lions that’s what you need to do to help and serve the community. She goes above and beyond, and she is a great person all around."

The Lions Club was founded in October 1917 and has expanded to 250 countries with over 1.4 million members. The organization's current goal is to expand their numbers and reach 1.5 million members.

Last year, Tripp went to St. Charles, Illinois, and spent a week training over 750 district governors from around the world. But while she was an instructor, she was learning too.

“My favorite class in college was cultural geography," she said. "Learning about the different foods, and different mannerisms was fascinating. When I was teaching in St. Charles, I had several students from India, and I wondered about certain physical behaviors that they were doing that I didn’t understand. So, when I finally got home, I started asking around and researching the different conversational attitude and types, and how the address to each other.”

Tripp is part of the Satellite Beach club in Cocoa Beach as well, which raises money by parking cars at car shows and packaging food during the holidays. Last year, they gave away over 230 boxes of food at Christmas.

Tripp also helps with Family Promise of Brevard, an outreach program in partnership with St. David's by the Sea Episcopal Church in Cocoa Beach, that aims to prevent families from becoming homeless. She was been part of initiatives that provide food for people in need, diapers and canned food for Mother’s Day and school supplies for Kafeel Elementary School.

The Lions Club International Board is made up of a president, three vice presidents and 34 international directors. To become an international director, one has to have training as well as have previously served as a district governor, which Tripp did in 2015 and 2016.

Past elections used to have a rule that, in order to run for international direction, a candidate had to have 1,250 members in their district, but with member numbers decreasing in the U.S., the international board removed the rule, allowing Tripp a chance to run.

“She takes advantage of every opportunity that she can to learn more about the Lions Club, so she can leave with a new perspective,” said Greg Evan, Lions Club member and restaurant owner of Alfie’s in Ormond-By-the-Sea.


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