Last October I reported on the renaming of the Alonzo Stevens Jr. Government Affairs Award to the AANR Government Affairs Memorial Award. The reasoning was that the number of Government Affairs Team members we have lost deserve a memorial as did Alonzo. This year the award was presented with the new name for the first time.
The winner of this year’s AANR Government Affairs Memorial Award is a man who has been so effective in government affairs for so long that he actually won the Alonzo Stevens award a few years ago. This year’s winner is Bob Morton.
This last year we shifted our bill analysis software company to State Net. When we initiated the shift Bob told us the learning curve would be steep and compared it to getting our information from a fire hose after having received it from a drinking fountain up to that point. Truer words were never spoken. Bob proved himself up to the challenge and has excelled at tutoring the team members in the State Net system. I’d like to add that Bob has also schooled State Net in the deficiency in their system and what we would like to see improved as we use them in the future. At the same time Bob has tracked hundreds of bills on his own and distributed his notes for us to share with all of you.
My weekly updates this past year have often contained Bob’s notes on bills of concern to nudists in many states. Many calls for action were initiated based on Bob’s analysis. In some cases we were effective in blocking bills, in others we changed wording, while in others we simply just ended up letting our point of view be known.
One thing Bob can’t tolerate is inaction on items of concern. His enthusiasm and angst are well known to me and other members of the GAT team. Bob demands a lot of himself and cajoles action from others. His dedication to protecting and expanding nudists’ rights to be free to practice a family-friendly nudist way of life is documented in personal battles and court cases when he felt the need to affect change. I’d like to thank John Hunter for nominating Bob for this honor.
AANR Government Affairs Chair and AANR Vice President