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More than 400 invitations sent for Deen Day Smith Service to Mankind Awards gala
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Carl Swearingen - photo by Special
    In anticipation of the 20th anniversary of the Deen Day Smith Service to Mankind Awards gala, more than 400 invitations were sent Monday to past recipients, 2008 honorees and sponsors of the esteemed event.
    "We are inviting all past recipients we were able to locate," said A. Joe McGlamery, president of the Statesboro Herald, which hosts the invitation-only awards banquet.
    The first event was held in 1989, he said, adding that the program has grown substantially over the years.
    Due to planning needed for seating arrangements, all people receiving invitations are cordially reminded of the importance of responding.
    The deadline for RSVP's is Thursday, March 20 at noon, McGlamery said.
    The gala will be the most spectacular ever and "We're excited about having Carl Swearingen as speaker," he said. "He is well known throughout the state for his leadership, especially in the areas of education."
     Swearingen retired from the BellSouth Corporation in 2001 after his promotion in 1998  to Senior Vice President and Corporate Secretary.
    Georgia  Gov. Sonny Perdue appointed Swearingen in July, 2006, to the State Board of the Department of Technical and Adult Education. Swearingen was elected Chairman of the Board in July and represents the 6th  Congressional  District.  
    McGlamery said as seating is limited for the gala, "we urge all who plan to attend to RSVP as quickly as possible."
    Those receiving invitations who  plan to attend are asked to contact Julia Deal at (912) 489-9450.
    Hosted by the Statesboro Herald and supported by numerous local businesses and individuals, the Deen Day Smith Service to Mankind Awards was created to honor those who serve others with compassion and dedication without expectation of compensation or credit.
    Hundreds of area citizens have been honored with the award.  In addition to several Service to Mankind awards, the Statesboro Herald recognizes a Humanitarian of the Year, and select others are presented Lifetime Achievement awards.
    The gala's theme is butterflies, which is reflected through decor as well as accents to the meal such as butterfly shaped croissants and mints. The event is named for the renowned humanitarian, Deen Day Smith Sanders, known for her generosity and selflessness.
     The butterfly theme, which McGlamery said is "a symbol of renewal and rebirth," reflects the humanitarian's having founded a butterfly center at Callaway Gardens in memory of her late husband, who founded Days Inns.
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