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Special Recognition Award Presented to Veteran White House Correspondent Helen Thomas

ANNAPOLIS, MD (May 13, 2008) – Governor Martin O’Malley was joined by Secretary Gloria Lawlah, Secretary of Aging, Anne Arundel County Executive John Leopold and others at the first annual Governor’s Leadership in Aging Awards, recognizing older Marylanders for their service and contribution towards a better Maryland. The Governor declared May 2008 Older Marylander’s Month, and presented a special Lifetime Achievement Award to Helen Thomas, the legendary White House Correspondent whose work covering American Presidents has spanned nearly fifty years.

“The senior citizen community is vital to the progress of our One Maryland, and it is my honor to recognize that contribution here today,”

said Governor Martin O’Malley. “Today we honor the leadership of Maryland’s senior citizens and our shared belief that there is no such thing as a spare American, no matter our age. Each of us must do our part to contribute to the common good.”

“May is Older Marylanders’ Month, and it is important that we take time to acknowledge some exceptional seniors in the State of Maryland for their accomplishments in the arts and fitness, as well as other leaders who have contributed to the quality of life of our seniors,” said Gloria Lawlah, Secretary of the Maryland Department of Aging. “I am especially pleased to recognize Helen Thomas for her legendary career and continuing contributions to American journalism.”

The Governor’s Leadership in Aging Awards is a celebration of those who have made outstanding contributions to the field of Aging and the quality of life for seniors in Maryland. Award winners include:

Visual Arts: Group – Senior Artist


Individual – Wasyl Palijczuk

Performing Arts: Baltimore County Senior Jazz Band

Health and Vitality: Victoria L. Smith

Outstanding Service Contributions: Reverend John


Lifetime Achievement: Helen Thomas

In presenting the Lifetime Achievement Award to veteran journalist Helen Thomas, Governor O’Malley noted the visionary nature of her service in media. “For decades, Helen Thomas has been an indomitable journalistic force, helping to shape and advance the national discussion,” said Governor O’Malley. “She’s dared to step up and face great adversity to better the profession and the country she loves.”

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