NEW HAVEN, Conn. — On May 3, 2018, the Foundation of the New Haven County Bar will honor the recipient of the 2018 Liberty Bell Award at its annual Liberty Bell Bash. The Liberty Bell Award honors non-practicing lawyers and/or community organizations that have shown an extraordinary commitment to justice or provided outstanding service to the local community. This year’s award will be presented to Althea Musgrove Norcott because of the extraordinary examples of her service to the New Haven County community and her lifelong commitment to humanitarian service worldwide.
Althea Musgrove Norcott was a lifelong educator primarily at Hillhouse High School in New Haven. Her platform as an educator powerfully guided and facilitated her impact on many youth both here and worldwide. Her impact as an educator has been far reaching from her work in conflict resolution for youth developing peer mediation programs, to her work for special needs children in U.S. Virgin Islands, to her work in giving children a lifelong gift of perspective with a view to the world through international exchanges to Africa.
Althea states in accepting her award, “The hard work and sacrifice of my parents, George and Mavis Musgrove, on the backdrop of the Second World War, provided to me a valuable perspective on the world at an early age, as well as, a strength and drive that informed a commitment to others. I have also been humbled in receiving recognitions of this kind because of the collaborative efforts required in such work. This award reminds me of all of the dedicated and talented people that I have worked with over a lifetime”.
Althea has chaired and volunteered for many service activities involving and benefiting the youth of New Haven. She was an active member of the New Haven Chapter of Jack and Jill, Inc. and co-chaired the New Haven Host Town Program during the 1995 Special Olympics World Games. In 1996, she co-founded the Freetown-New Haven Sister Cities Committee and has served as its chairperson for over twenty years. In 2009, she was awarded the Distinguished Humanitarian Service Award from the National Organization of Sierra Leoneans in North America; and in 2015 she received the Volunteer of the Year Award from Sister Cities International in Minneapolis, Minnesota for her work raising funds, as well as sending ambulances and medical supplies to her sister city, Freetown during the Ebola Crisis.
As Foundation President, Mike Leone, remarked, “Over the course of Althea Musgrove Norcott’s lifelong career, she has been guided by the principle that all youth regardless of socioeconomic status and disability, deserved the same opportunities she had in life. Further, at a time in America when there is a temptation to look inward, Althea Musgrove Norcott believes that we are stronger and better when our responsibilities to each other extend globally to all citizens of this world as shown by her important work in Africa. We are very pleased to honor Althea Musgrove Norcott this year”.
Althea remains an active member of her community. She is a life-long member of Dixwell Avenue Congregational United Church of Christ where she was a member of the Christian Education Board and is currently a member of the Deacon Board. She is also a member of Theta Epsilon Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., the New Haven Chapter of Girl Friends, Inc., and has served on the boards of Amistad America, Inc. and the New Haven Scholarship Fund. Althea lives in New Haven with her husband, Justice Flemming L. Norcott, Jr., and is the proud mother of three children- Daryl (Cynthia), Tiffany (Bret) and Candice and four grandchildren (Murphy, Otis, Nola and Summer).
The Bash will also feature the presentation of the Foundation’s Book Award, a monetary award given to a third-year law student in Connecticut intending to pursue a legal career that serves communities.
The evening will also highlight Project Youth Court, a restorative justice program in the New Haven community that engages a youth’s peers to repair the harm caused by a youth’s action to give them a second chance at building a strong community.
The Foundation of the New Haven County Bar is the charitable arm of the New Haven County Bar Association. Established in 1989, the Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization through which local attorneys, other legal professionals and community members serve the needs of the Greater New Haven area by providing financial support to organizations that promote justice, assist the needy, and contribute to the greater public good through grants and legal related public service programs. A decade long commitment by the Foundation to eliminating homelessness through the “Snowball Tournament” has resulted in over $125,000 being raised for New Reach, a New Haven County non-profit organization. The Foundation maintains the Martha Sullivan Tribute Fund, the Thomas J. Witt Memorial Children’s Book Fund and the Book Award for Connecticut law students.
Over the years, the Foundation has provided funding to critical organizations in New Haven County including New Haven Reads, LEAP, IRIS, CWEALF, the Connecticut Veteran Legal Services, The Downtown Evening Soup Kitchen, and the Yale Sappern Memorial Fund amongst others. The Foundation has donated over $300,000 in the past 10 years.
The Liberty Bell Bash will be held at the Shubert Theater at 247 College Street, New Haven, from 6:00 to 9:30pm on May 3, 2018. This year’s event is a cocktail party with food vendors from the New Haven area and complimentary wine and beer, allowing the Foundation to maximize the charitable aspect of the event. To purchase tickets for the Liberty Bell Bash, please go to www.fnhcb.org or contact the Foundation of the New Haven County Bar at (203) 562-9652. To make donations, or become a sponsor, please contact the Executive Director, Gillian Fattal, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 203.562.9652.