Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Some Glad Tidings for the Vermont State Archivist, Gregory Sanford...

... and a break, sorta, from the daily wingnuttery of the Vermont seceshers.

There's been so much to write about recently regarding Vermont secessionists and some of their truly despicable allies and (I know that they dread the word) associates, that I thought it time to break for some pleasant news separated by a few (but not too many) degrees from the Second Vermont Republic and "Vermont Commons" seceshers.

Vermont State Archivist, Gregory Sanford, will receive the Vermont Press Association's "Matthew Lyon Award for his lifetime commitment to the First Amendment in Vermont."

Given his commitment to truth it should come a little surprise that Sanford's considerable work on behalf of all Vermonters has, in turn, been a spoiler to the historical revisionists of the Vermont secesher community.

Congrats, Greg!
Vermont Archivist Sanford Honored
Free Press Staff Report
Tuesday, February 15, 2011

MONTPELIER -- Gregory Sanford, the Vermont state archivist since 1982, has been selected to receive the Matthew Lyon Award for his lifetime commitment to the First Amendment in Vermont.

The Vermont Press Association will present the award to Sanford during its annual awards banquet at noon Thursday at the Capitol Plaza Hotel.

VPA President Bethany Dunbar, editor of the Chronicle in Barton, said Sanford has been a leader in efforts for open access to public records and for the proper management of records so people can find out how government operates. Sanford has shown that proper documentation of public issues can provide context in addressing issues, Dunbar said.

"Gregory Sanford is one of the beacons in state government that completely understands the need and the importance of keeping and maintaining public records, especially historic records. He is keeping Vermont's institutional memory intact for the public and the press today and for historians tomorrow," Dunbar said.

The VPA created the award to honor people who uphold the First Amendment.

The First Amendment award is named for the former Vermont congressman, who was jailed in 1798 under the Alien and Sedition Act for sending a letter to the editor criticizing President John Adams. While Lyon was serving his federal sentence in a Vergennes jail, Vermonters re-elected him to the U.S. House of Representatives.

Sanford grew up in Redding, Conn. and graduated from Washington College in Maryland in 1969. He obtained a master's degree in history from the University of Vermont in 1977. At UVM, Sanford served as assistant director of the George D. Aiken Oral History program, named for the former Vermont governor and longtime U.S. senator.

During 1977-78, Sanford was at M.I.T.'s Institute Archives working on, among other things, documenting unfolding dialogues. He returned to Vermont to finish the Aiken project and was named state archivist in 1982...

Previous Matthew Lyon winners include Patrick J. Leahy for his work as a state prosecutor and as a U.S. senator; Edward J. Cashman for his efforts as Chittenden Superior Court clerk, a state prosecutor and a state judge; and Burlington lawyer Robert Hemley, who has battled to open closed courtrooms, unlawfully withheld public records and improper subpoenas served on newspaper reporters.


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