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Barberton court administrator receives Moyer Scholarship Award

Barberton Municipal Court Administrator Susan Sweeney had no idea that a trip to Columbus on Thursday would end with her receiving the 2012 Chief Justice Thomas J. Moyer Memorial Scholarship Award.

Under the guise of a meeting to discuss Barberton’s new mental health court, judges Christine L. Croce and David E. Fish drove with Sweeney to the Moyer Judicial Center. They convinced Sweeney to stop by the Ohio Association for Court Administration (OACA) fall conference to kill time before their “meeting” began.

To Sweeney’s surprise, Ohio Judicial College Director Milt Nuzum announced her as the third recipient of the scholarship, which is awarded annually. OACA officers created the award in 2010 after the death of Chief Justice Moyer.

Sweeney said the episode caught her off guard.

“Anyone who knows me knows that I’m a planner, which by default means I don’t like surprises,” she said. “However, this was quite a nice surprise and such an honor to receive this prestigious scholarship award.”

Before he presented Sweeney with the award, Nuzum read from her application and said that she “articulated in the application an aspiration that Chief Justice Moyer would have approved with enthusiasm.”

Sweeney said she would use the $1,000 scholarship to further her professional development.

“As the newly appointed court administrator, I face my greatest challenge in working to meet the needs and expectations of a court that has committed to changing the status quo and implementing best practices,” she wrote in the application. “Continued court administration education will only help in meeting this challenge and exceeding expectations.”

Sweeney said the award’s namesake had an impact on her, although not in a direct way.

“I never had the privilege of personally meeting Chief Justice Moyer,” she said. “But I carry with me his words, as he spoke to a room full of aspiring lawyers taking the bar examination about the importance of our future role in the judicial system. I believe those of us that are fortunate enough to be a part of the judicial system must rise to the level of commitment, integrity, and leadership that Chief Justice Moyer exemplified.”

Content courtesy of Court News Ohio.

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