Congratulations to our Most Worshipful Grand Master
Br. Raymond E. Hassell
Our 160th Grand Master for the Grand Lodge of the Most Ancient and Honorable Society of Free and Accepted Masons for the State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations
Raymond Eric Hassell was born on November 14, 1946 in Providence Rhode Island, the only child of Eric A. Hassell and Doris V. (Pinkerton) Hassell. He grew up in Riverside and was educated in the East Providence Public School system graduating from East Providence High School in 1964. His continued education included a variety of classes and courses in the automotive field.
Raymond entered the family business of Hassell’s Garage after graduation from High School and worked for his Father until 1980 when he took over the family shop which he still owns and runs it to this day on a semi retired basis with the assistance of his daughter Donna. He is an ASE Certified Master Tech on both cars and trucks, a State Inspector and Emissions Specialist.
On February 26, 1966 Ray Married Lynn Arnold also of Riverside and they have 3 children Barbara, Donna and Tamra and 7 Grandchildren. Ray and Lynn lived in Riverside until 1986 when they moved to East Providence where they still reside.
Ray served in the United States Army in 1967 -1969 including a tour in Viet Nam. He is a member of Hope Congregational Church in East Providence where he has served on various committees including Church Council, Search committee, Moderator and is presently serving on the Board of Deacons.
Masonically , Brother Hassell petitioned St Andrews Lodge #39 in spring of 1983 and took his Entered Apprentice degree in September, Fellowcraft in October and Master Masons degree in November and signed the By Laws at the Annual on November 30, 1983. He served as Master of St Andrews Lodge #39 in 1990, 1999 and 2006. He is also a member of St Johns Lodge #1p, Adelphoi Lodge #33 and Overseas Lodge #40.
Brother Hassell’s Grand Lodge appointments include Grand Pursuivant for MWGM Donald Hopkins in 1991, Grand Master of Ceremonies for DDGM Robert J Allen from 1992 through serving as Grand Marshall in 2002 with MWGM Robert J Allen. He was appointed District Deputy Grand Master for the Southern District by Most Worshipful Steven E Smith in 2007. He served in the South, Central, Northern, East Bay and Metro Districts and was elected Junior Grand Warden in 2012, Senior Grand Warden in 2013 and Deputy Grand Master in 2014 and Grand Master Elect in November 2015.
Brother Hassell is a member of Temple Royal Arch Chapter #3 in Warren and served as High Priest in 1988 and 1995. He is also a member of Providence Chapter #1 serving as High Priest in 2003 and 2007. He was appointed to the Grand Chapter line in 1993 and served as Grand High Priest in 1996 and received the Junius C H Schmit Distinguished Service Medal from New Jersey. He served as Ambassador to the General Grand Chapter 2011 through 2014.
In Cryptic masonry he is a member of Webb Council #3 and served as Thrice Illustrious Master in 1990 and 1998. He is also a Member of Providence Council #1 serving as Thrice Illustrious Master in 2002 and 2005. He was appointed to the Grand Council Line in 1997 and Served as the Most Illustrious Grand Master in 2001. He received the General Grand Council Youth Leadership Award and was appointed the North East Regional Deputy for the General Grand Council of Cryptic Masons International from 2005 to 2007.
He was knighted in Calvary Commandery #13 and served as Commander in 1994-1995. He is also a member of St Johns Commandery #1 and Northampton Commandery #30. He received the Knight Commander of the Temple Award in 2013.
In the Ancient Accepted Scottish Rite Brother Hassell is a member of the Valley of Providence and served as Thrice Potent Master of Solomon’s Lodge of Perfection in 2006-2007 and Commander-in-Chief of Rhode Island Consistory in 2012. He was Coroneted an Honorary Member Sovereign Grand Inspectors General, 33rd Degree in Grand Rapids Michigan in 2005. He is also member of The Royal Order of Scotland.
He is a member of the Rhode Island Shriners, Ancient Arabic Order Nobles of the Mystic Shrine and served on the ceremonial degree team for more than 20 years. He is a member of the Legion of Honor and a member of Providence Court #71 Royal Order of Jesters and Moslem Grotto, Mystic Order of the Veiled Prophets of the Enchanted Realm.
He is a member of Order of the Eastern Star serving as Worthy Patron of Unity Chapter #14 several times before their merger with Martha Washington Chapter #18 in Warren. He has worked many years with the Masonic Youth and served as Dad for Rainbow and on the Executive Committee and also is a Rainbow Girl. Ray has received the Grand Cross of Color from the International Order of Rainbow for Girls and the DeMolay Legion of Honor.
Other Masonic service includes membership in Plantations Conclave #30 Red Cross of Constantine, and served as Puissant Sovereign, membership in Roger Williams Priory #48 Knights of the York Cross of Honor and served as Eminent Prior, membership in What Cheer York Rite College serving as Governor in 1999, appointed as Grand Governor for Rhode Island and Elected a Regent of York Rite Sovereign College of North America in Tampa Florida 2013. He is also a member of Colonial Council Knight Masons and served as Excellent Chief, Renaissance Council # 429 Allied Masonic Degrees and served as Sovereign Master, Damascus Tabernacle #26 Holy Royal Arch Knight Templar Priests and has served as Preceptor. He is also a Member in Narragansett Bay Chapter #14 National Sojourners, Massasoit Forest #91 Tall Cedars of Lebanon, Gaspee Order #99 Swords of Bunker Hill, International Police Square Club, Royal Ark Mariners, Grand College of Rites of the United States of America and Rhode Island and Providence Plantations College Societas Rosicruciana.