COLUMBUS – Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose has received the 2021 "Innovators Award" from the National Association of State Election Directors (NASED) for Ohio's Precinct Election Official Recruitment Program during the 2020 election.
Like most states, Ohio faced a potential scarcity in poll workers leading up to the November 2020 election, as Ohioans were instructed to avoid crowds and were reticent to participate in widely-attended functions.
Lawyers for Liberty is a collaboration between the Ohio Secretary of State and the Ohio Supreme Court allowing Ohio attorneys to receive required Continuing Legal Education (CLE) credit for serving as a precinct election official. A post-election review of Lawyers for Liberty revealed that 1,082 Ohio attorneys served as poll workers during the 2020 November election.
Upon receiving the award, Secretary LaRose said, “Overcoming a once in a lifetime challenge required an innovative approach – one that relied on the patriotism of Ohioans who appreciated the monumental task facing our state. Thanks to a record 56,000 Ohio poll workers, and the bipartisan teams of election officials who trained them, our state ran the most successful election in our state's history.
"Our state has earned a reputation as the gold standard of election administration, and we’ll maintain that position long as we continue to embrace the creativity and grit that got us there," said the Secretary. "Thank you to NASED for this incredible honor – it’s one I share with my team, Ohio’s election officials, and tens of thousands of poll workers who made sure Ohio’s voice was heard.”
Lawyers for Liberty was but one of a number of successful programs Ohio created to ensure an adequate pipeline of precinct officials in 2020. In recognition of his creative recruitment efforts, in March of 2021, Secretary LaRose won a “Clearie” award, hosted by the U.S. Election Assistance Commission, for his innovative voter outreach and poll worker recruitment programs that led to Ohio’s most successful election ever.
Learn more about the NASED "Innovators Award" here.
Learn more about the "Clearie" Award here.