Our next Team Member Testimonial is from Phillip Potter, the Hospitality Director for the Wisconsin Lions Camp Rentals program. Read on to learn more about Phillip, his history with Lions Camp, and what fuels his passion for the work we do.
Tell us a little about yourself (hobbies, personal interests, who are you outside of work?
I am married and have a son who will be five on Halloween. When not at work, I try to spend as much time with my family as I can. Playing backyard baseball and basement hockey with my son are my typical after-work activities. My wife and I enjoy traveling and try to take a trip somewhere new each year. I also enjoy playing golf and try to find time to play a few rounds each year with my dad.
How long have you worked with the Wisconsin Lions Foundation?
I joined the Wisconsin Lions Foundation as a full-time employee in March 2021 so I have been on the team for slightly more than two years. However, I worked for the Foundation as a Summer Camp Staff for the summers of 2008-2011.
How would you describe the Wisconsin Lions Foundation and what you do?
The Wisconsin Lions Foundation is all about serving others. Originally being hired on the Summer Camp side of things, I was able to see firsthand the impact that Camp has on our campers. Then, by transitioning into the Hospitality Director role, I have learned just how impactful the other four projects are as well. As Hospitality Director, I get to help bring the magic of this organization to the general public. I work to bring as many groups out to Wisconsin Lions Camp as possible during the Rentals season to give them the opportunity of a truly customized Camp experience. I also have the privilege of welcoming the guests, Lions Clubs, and visitors to the property via tours and Visitor Day events. It is a special experience to interact with Lions throughout the state and see their faces when they see just how important this facility is. Whether this is their first visit or they have been here numerous times, I enjoy being able to give everyone a fresh perspective on our work.
How did you originally become involved with this organization?
Back in 2008, I had a random thought that working at a camp could be a fun experience. I mentioned this to my mom on the phone one day and not long after, she sent me a flyer she found advertising the Wisconsin Lions Camp was looking for staff. I applied, had my interview in a hotel lobby in Minneapolis, was hired, and the rest is history!
How did you find your way into your current role?
When I was originally hired as the Assistant Camp Director, a big responsibility I was assigned was the off-season program. I developed an interest in working with the various groups who rent our facility and in February of 2023 I officially became the Hospitality Director. Since that time I have been working on a lot of updates to the program, including changing the name to Wisconsin Lions Camp Rentals.
What’s your favorite part about working with the Wisconsin Lions Foundation or your role?
My favorite part of working at the Wisconsin Lions Foundation is interacting with all of the guests, visitors, and Lions. Each person has a story to tell and our facility is a special and welcoming place. I get the pleasure of hearing from our guests, visitors, and Lions about how Camp and the Foundation have had such positive impacts on so many lives.
What message do you have for someone interested in becoming a donor to the Wisconsin Lions Foundation? For someone interested in becoming a volunteer/Lion?
I am incredibly grateful to the Wisconsin Lions Foundation for the impact that working here has had on my life. As a summer staff, I ended up meeting my future wife here. She was a summer staff at the same time I was. The entire trajectory of my life changed when I decided to work at Wisconsin Lions Camp and I think that is just one of the many stories about how special this organization is. We serve so many throughout the state of Wisconsin in so many ways and the impact goes beyond the originally intended audience. Although I was working with campers and helping to provide an amazing week for each of them, my own life was being changed by the campers and my coworkers at the same time. For those interested in donating to the Wisconsin Lions Foundation, they can rest assured that their donation has a direct impact on so many lives. Whether the donation is towards the general operating fund or a specific project, the money helps us to further our mission of reaching, touching, and improving lives. I would encourage anyone interested in being a Lion to reach out to their local club and to also contact me to schedule a tour at our facility. Seeing all that we do in person helps to put in perspective the work that all of the Lions Clubs throughout the state do every day.
In one word, describe the Wisconsin Lions Foundation and its Mission.