About PBA         Casemaker         Pennsylvania Bar Institute         Pennsylvania Bar Foundation         Calendar Calendar                
For Lawyers                          For the Public                          Events & Education                          News & Publications                          Get Involved

HARRISBURG (May 20, 2005) — The Pennsylvania Bar Association Young Lawyers Division (YLD) presented its prestigious Liberty Bell Award to Pennsylvania State Sen. Jane C. Orie during the association’s Annual Meeting in Pittsburgh May 4-6, 2005.

“Our Liberty Bell Award recognizes the individualism, courage, enterprise and altruism of leaders in a free society,” said James Wells, Esq., then-chair of the YLD. “We could not think of anyone more deserving of this award than Sen. Orie for her years of service and leadership in her local community and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.”

The PBA/YLD presents the Liberty Bell Award to an individual for his or her outstanding community service and for promoting the “blessing of liberty” guaranteed by the Constitution. Criteria for the award include: promoting a better understanding of our government and the Bill of Rights; encouraging greater respect for the law and the courts; creating a better awareness of individual responsibility so that citizens recognize their duties as well as their rights; contributing to the effective functioning of our government; and encouraging a better understanding and appreciation of the rule of law. Past recipients of the award include Lisa Beamer for her courage shown after Sept. 11, 2001, former Pennsylvania Gov. Mark Schweiker for his leadership during the Quecreek Mine rescue and Pennsylvania State Sen. John Pippy for his service during Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Sen. Jane Orie was elected to the Pennsylvania Senate in March 2001. She currently represents portions of northern Allegheny County and southern and central Butler County. Prior to taking her seat in the Senate, Sen. Orie spent four years in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives. She previously was a state deputy attorney general in the Division of Criminal Prosecution and an assistant district attorney in Allegheny County.

One of Sen. Orie’s most enduring achievements is the “Hearts of Steel” bracelet project to honor and remember the passengers of United Airlines Flight 93 that crashed in Pennsylvania on Sept. 11, 2001. Hundreds of sponsors, volunteers and organizations came together to raise funds for the construction of a permanent memorial at the crash site in Shanksville. The bracelets were sold for $10, and the project raised over $1 million.

In addition, Sen. Orie has spearheaded several other projects to benefit the community. Through the “Valentines for Veterans” and “Shamrocks for Seniors” programs, Sen. Orie visits veterans’ hospitals and nursing homes in her district to present patients and seniors with valentines and shamrocks made by local school children. “There Ought to Be a Law” is a unique program in which Sen. Orie invites seventh and eighth grade students in her district to create an idea for a new Pennsylvania law. The winner is offered a special visit to the State Capitol. Sen. Orie also established the “Reach Out and Touch a Hero” program to honor and commend our servicemen. A Web site was created to enable students to send e-mails to servicemen and servicewomen stationed around the world.

Sen. Orie is a graduate of Franklin & Marshall College and the Duquesne University School of Law.