Duly Noted

Grand Rapids Bar Association seeks nominations for Liberty Bell Award

 The Grand Rapids Bar Association (GRBA) is seeking nominations for its Liberty Bell Award. The Liberty Bell Award is presented each year by the GRBA to a non-lawyer or non-profit organization in recognition of outstanding contribution to the cause of justice or to advancing public awareness of the Constitution and our Legal system.

Nomination forms can be found online at www.grbar.org.  Nomination deadline is March 23, 2012.

The award has been presented annually since 1962. Recent Liberty Bell Award recipients include:

—2011: CASA of Kent County, Inc., for their work in empowering citizens to become advocates on behalf of abused or neglected children as they pass through the family court system.

—2010: Home Repair Services, specifically their Financial Counseling Program which counsels families facing the foreclosure process and helps many families avoid losing their homes.

—2009: Janice P. Yates, for her enduring work with the East Grand Rapids “We the People” team

—2008: The Prostitution Round Table, for this collaborative efforts to promote understanding and develop programs to improve relationships with the police, the courts, and social service systems to more effectively reduce crime and to create opportunity and equity for marginalized members of our community.

—2007: Paralegal Juan Salazar of Legal Aid of Western Michigan, for his tireless efforts representing impoverished clients in front of federal judges in Supplemental Security Income hearings and for his work improving knowledge or Social Security Administration law at Legal Aid.

Awards will be presented at the 2012 Law Day Celebration and Awards Luncheon on May 1, 2012 at the University Club in downtown Grand Rapids. At that luncheon, the GRBA will also give the President’s Award, to recognize special contributions by a member in service and/or support to the GRBA Board of Trustees, Executive Committee, and Executive Director; and, if merited, the Donald R. Worsfold Distinguished Service Award, which recognizes a career of service to the Bar, the profession and the community. Nominations for those two awards are also due March 1.