The Liberty Bell Award was presented to Sandra Englehart Drummond for her many years of involvement in causes that benefitted Barry County at the Law Day celebration Wednesday.
The keynote speaker was Michigan Supreme Court Justice, Kurtis T Wilder (see related story).
Barry County Bar Association President Robert Byington presented the award to Drummond, saying she showed her commitment and civic responsibility to the community by giving to many individuals, groups and organizations. He had a list of her accomplishments, but told the audience that is was so long they would fall asleep before he finished reading it.
He instead highlighted her work in coordinating the Ferris State University Dental Hygiene Program, on the Barry County Women’s Festival, the establishment and as the first executive director of Green Gables Haven, the only shelter for victims of domestic violence in the county, Leadership Barry County and establishing the Rumpelstiltskin Trial, where elementary students go to county courtrooms to argue the case of Rumpelstiltskin versus the Queen.
“Thank you. I don’t even know how to tell you how honored I am,” Drummond said accepting the award. “I’m not a native of Barry County, but I’ve been embraced by Barry County. This is a county that is very inclusive. If you want to say ‘ yes’ to Barry County, you can do all kinds of exciting things.
“The reality of Green Gables is Judge (Richard) Shaw pounded his fist on the table saying, “we are going to do something about domestic violence in this county,’” she recalled. “It was an exciting adventure, because everywhere I went, people were saying ‘yes, we need this.’”
It started without state funding, supported by Barry County. “It opened in 2004 and Barry County is still supporting it, yes, there were big, private donors, but Girl Scouts… people on the street were supporting it and they still are. Thank you, Barry County for letting me participate with you.”//
Barry County District Court Judge Michael Schipper welcomed the group gathered at the Barry County Enrichment Center, saying Law Day is “a neat opportunity to discuss and remember why law is so important in our country and what a foundation it plays in how unique we are.” Also, it allows them to “acknowledge someone in our community who has done great things, many times quietly.”
Byington gave a little history of the event. The first Law Day was held in 1957 to counter the Soviet Union’s May Day celebration, and to stress to the world the importance the United States places on the rule of law. In 1958, it became a national day of celebration, bringing information and respect for the law. Now celebrated every year across the nation, each president since then has issued a proclamation verifying the rule of law, he said.
(upper left) Sandra Englehart Drummond speaks after accepting the Liberty Bell Award at Law Day.
(middle right) Sandra Englehart Drummond (right) chats with Thornapple Manor Drector of Support Services Lyn Briel (left) and Director of Marketing at Hastings City Bank Nancy Goodin at the reception before the Law Day program.
(left) Sandra Englehart Drummond with her husband Don Drummond, wait for the Law Day program to begin.