The White Shoe Irregular:
It was fun while it lasted.

In Honor of Darien's 2000 Citizen of the Year

Representative Judy Biggert

Mr. Speaker, I rise in honor of Dee Leverson, the 2000 Citizen of the Year for Darien, Illinois.

The city of Darien is at the heart of Illinois's thirteenth congressional district. It is a central crossroads for a growing region. And its residents continue to work hard to live up to the city's understated motto — "a nice place to live."

Sometimes, though, that is a tall order. We all know that civic involvement is declining. Even the pillars of our communities, such as the Parent Teachers Association and the Boy Scouts, are experiencing declining rates of participation.

But we also know that there are those in our communities that set a shining example to which we all should aspire. Dee Leverson is one of those people.

When one looks at all that Dee has done for Darien, it becomes clear why she was selected as Darien's 2000 Citizen of the Year. She helped found the Darien Women's Club. She assisted in organizing the Darien Chamber of Commerce. She served on the Darienfest committee for several years, including two as its cochairperson. She then served as chairperson of Darien Day for two years as well.

In between all of that, Dee somehow found time to serve on the committee for the first Darien Bookmobile, was active in the Lace School PTA, was a Cub Scout leader, and co-owned and operated a women's apparel store in Darien. She also served as a cochairman for the first Cystic Fibrosis drive in the area and helped her husband, Ron, launch the Darien Lion's Club needy family drive.

However, I could not sum up what Dee has meant to Darien better than what her own neighbors said about her.

They wrote: "Dee exemplifies what good citizenship is. Her strong commitment to home, family, community, and the less fortunate make her an outstanding candidate for Citizen of the Year."

I could not agree more. Dee is the kind of person who keeps our communities vibrant and alive. Congratulations to Dee Leverson, Darien's 2000 Citizen of the Year. She has made Darien much more than a "nice place to live."

[Taken from the Congressional Record, 1 February 2001, page E98.]