Contact: Amy Keeling, WWU Fairhaven College, (360) 650-3811, or e-mail Amy.Keeling@wwu.edu.
BELLINGHAM - Daniel Larner, a professor at Western Washington University's Fairhaven College of Interdisciplinary Studies,has been awarded the 2008 Liberty Bell Award by the Whatcom County Bar Association.
The award is given each year on Law Day by bar associations to acknowledge exceptional community service by non-lawyers for their commitment to education, civil liberties and civic responsibility under the law.
"Considering everything Dan does for our community, one wonders how he has the time or energy to devote to his staunch advocacy for the preservation of civil liberties," said Steve Chance, president of the Whatcom County Bar Association, during his presentation of the award on May 7.
"Dan is an established playwright and a frequently published scholar of theater and literature. He has served for many years on the Board of Directors of the Mount Baker Theater, during which time he has served in every capacity known to the theater, including consulting with the theater architects when renovations were done."
Larner's rich history of community service, leadership and education includes a 40-year membership on the board of directors for the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Washington. He regularly gives presentations to community groups, schools and universities on issues of civil liberties for the ACLU.
Since he arrived at WWU in 1968, Larner's role has evolved. He taught in the English, Speech and Theatre departments, and was one of the co-founders of the College of Fine and Performing Arts in 1976.
In 1982, Larner was named dean of Fairhaven College, where he has settled into teaching theatre after stepping down as dean in 1989. In addition to theatre and film, he now teaches courses such as "Rights, Liberties, and Justice in America" for Fairhaven's Law, Diversity and Justice program, which has enabled hundreds of students to learn the skills of critical thinking and writing, as well as civic responsibility.
For more information, contact Amy Keeling at (360) 650-3811, or e-mail Amy.Keeling@wwu.edu.