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When Newton Kiwanis Club, Newton-Conover’s oldest civic community service organization and until recent years an all-male group, recently installed new officers it made history.
The new president is the first woman member and—therefore—its first woman president. Newton native Mary Bess Lawing, a Newton city councilwoman at different times for nearly 30 years, was elected to lead the club. She is currently serving on the city’s governing board and is a long-time legal secretary in Newton.
Kiwanis members elected Lawing to succeed Les Sigmon, who has served as Kiwanis president several times.
To read more of this story, pick up the Tuesday edition of Catawba County's community newspaper, The Observer News Enterprise, at newsstands throughout the county.