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Two share top leadership award.

Connecticut House Minority Leader Robert M. Ward and South Carolina Speaker David H. Wilkins share the nation's top legislative honor, the 2004 Excellence in State Legislative Leadership Award. This is third time in the 10-year history of the award that co-recipients have been named.

Each year, the National Conference of State Legislatures, the State Legislative Leadership Foundation and the Council of State Governments honor a legislative leader who has exhibited a commitment to protecting and strengthening the institution of the state legislature.

"Speaker Wilkins and Representative Ward have displayed true political courage and leadership during their tenure as legislative leaders," said NCSL Executive Director Bill Pound. "Their ability to forge consensus and tackle difficult public policy challenges have helped preserve the integrity and honor of the legislative institution."

In accepting the award, Representative Ward said, "I am truly honored. I couldn't be happier, or more proud."

Each award winner received a plaque and a $5,000 check made payable to the charity of his choice. The benefactor of Representative Ward's prize will be the North Branford Scholarship Fund. The benefactor of Speaker Wilkins' prize will be the Myers Center.

Speaker Wilkins said splitting the award made it more meaningful. "This is even more special to receive along with a great leader like Bob Ward," Wilkins said. "Moments like these remind me that if I can see a little higher, it's because I've stood on the shoulders of giants. ... I am grateful for this award, and for the tiny role I've been privileged to play in our democracy."
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Title Annotation:The Legislative Reality
Publication:State Legislatures
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Oct 1, 2004
Words:257
Previous Article:NCSL Annual Meeting 2004.
Next Article:The budget picture.
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