CINCINNATI -- The Valley of Youngstown Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite of Freemasonry named Vernon W. Souders of Niles as the 2001 recipient of the meritorious service award June 2 at the Ohio Council of Deliberation held in Cincinnati.
Souders is a member and tyler of Sincerity Lodge 694 of Niles. He became a member of the Scottish Rite in 1976, and joined its stage crew in 1977 and continues to serve. He is a member of the Ida McKinley Chapter, Order of the Eastern Star, for which he has served as marshal, warder, sentinel and chaplain. He has served on the Niles Park board and was a trustee of the AFSCME.
He also has served as a 4-H adviser and on its board, and has been a host for the Niles Historical Society. He is employed as an auto body repairman and is a member of Niles First Christian Church, where he has served as deacon, elder, trustee and Christian Youth Fellowship adviser.
He and his wife, Carol, have two children.
Souders will receive his certificate, cap and jewel at the Council of Deliberation next June in Dayton.