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The Liberty Bell Award is presented at the Annual Meeting of the Bar Association to an individual:

  • who promotes a better understanding and appreciation of the rule of law
  • who encourages a greater respect for law and the courts
  • who stimulates a sense of civic responsibility
  • who contributes to the effectiveness of our institutions of government

Past NPBA Liberty Bell Award Recipients

  • 2023 Laurie Claywell, Kaufman & Canoles, P.C.
  • 2022 Debra Hill, Ret., Norfolk Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court
  • 2021 Cheryl Dougherty, Norfolk Circuit Court Clerk's Office
  • 2020 Donna Bausch, Executive Director of the Norfolk and Portsmouth Bar Association and Law Librarian of the Norfolk Law Library
  • 2019 Dr. Marla Newby, Norfolk Circuit Court Drug Court Coordinator
  • 2018 Valerie Tuck, Norfolk Public Schools
  • 2016 Jeanette Newton, Paralegal, Norfolk Commonwealth's Attorney Office
  • 2015 Miles Warren, Police Officer, City of Norfolk
  • 2014 Roxie A. Hoven, Executive Director, Norfolk CASA
  • 2013 Sandra Claxton, Judicial Programs Manager, Norfolk Circuit Court
  • 2011 Dr. Suzanne Starling, CHKD Pediatrician, Child Abuse Program
  • 2010 Rachel Hunter, social worker, Street Law Program
  • 2009 Lee Ann Curtis Avery, founding member, Friends of Norfolk Juvenile Court
  • 2008 Joshua Darden, business leader and philanthropist
  • 1998 G. William Whitehurst, member, U.S. House of Representatives, 1969-87 - Janie Whitehurst
  • 1997 Dr. William T. Greer, Jr., President, Virginia Wesleyan College, 1992-2015
  • 1996 Regina Marscheider, Spectrum Puppets creator
  • 1995 Martha R. Sorensen, Norfolk Court Docent Program
  • 1994 Harvey L. Lindsay, commercial real estate executive and philanthropist
  • 1993 Ann Hughes, Citizens Advisory Council, Norfolk Juvenile & Domestic Relations Court
  • 1991 Theresa H. Albertson, educator, Jean T. Hodges, educator and Girl Scout volunteer, Karla M. Smith, Suffolk River Heritage founder
  • 1990 Kenneth R. Hinderliter, Deputy Clerk, Norfolk Circuit Court, Supervisor, Law Division, 1966-89, Frank S. Tinuzzo, Deputy Clerk, Norfolk Circuit Court, Supervisor, Chancery Division, 1972-90
  • 1989 Evelyn T. Butts, successfully challenged Virginia's poll tax in the 1960s
  • 1988 Kevin Moran, Department of Juvenile Justice
  • 1987 Claude J. Staylor, Jr., Norfolk Chief of Police, 1967-74, Norfolk City Council, 1974-86
  • 1986 Hugh L. Stovall, Clerk, Norfolk Circuit Court
  • 1985 Joan S. Cohen, Norfolk Court Docent Program, Betty Wade Coyle, Executive Director, Prevent Child Abuse Hampton Roads
  • 1984 Gloria P. Hagans, Norfolk Public Schools Administrator
  • 1983 Frank Batten, Chairman, Landmark Communications, 1967-98, Publisher, The Virginian Pilot and philanthropist
  • 1982 John R. Sears, Jr., Harborfest co-founder
  • 1981 Alfred B. Rollins, Jr., President, Old Dominion University, 1976-85
  • 1980 Henry Clay Hofheimer, II, business and civic leader and philanthropist
  • 1979 Colgate W. Darden, member, U.S. House of Representatives, 1933-37, 1939-41, Governor of Virginia, 1947-59 and President of U.Va., 1947-59
  • 1978 Emily N. Spong, Portsmouth School Board member and Chair, 1937-60
  • 1977 Constance Laws, community leader in social work and gerontology
  • 1976 Capt. Paul L. Merwin, U.S. Navy
  • 1975 Friends of the Juvenile Court
  • 1974 Stanley C. Walker, member, Virginia House of Delegates and State Senator, 1965-2000
  • 1973 Lewis W. Hurst, Sr., Chair, Virginia State Crime Commission, 1973-82 and Vice-Chair, Virginia Parole Board, 1982-94
  • 1972 Vincent J. Thomas, Norfolk Mayor, 1976-84
  • 1971 Edwin L. Lamberth, Norfolk Superintendent of Schools, 1960-72
  • 1970 Porter Hardy, Jr., member, U.S. House of Representatives, 1947-69
  • 1969 Calvin H. Dalby, Norfolk Chief of Police, 1952-53
  • 1968 William Shands Meacham, Associate Editor of the Virginian Pilot
  • 1967 Harold Anderson, Norfolk Chief of Police, 1956-67
  • 1966 Samuel T. Northern, businessman who strengthened the relationship between the community and the military
  • 1965 Lenoir Chambers, Editor, The Virginian Pilot, 1950-61
  • 1964 John J. Brewbaker, Norfolk Superintendent of Schools, 1949-60