MORGANTOWN, WV – On October 11, the West Virginia University-Greater Morgantown Safe Communities announced that the recipient of its first annual National Safety Council Community Safety Leader Award is former Mayor of Morgantown, Marti Shamberger. The award will be presented annually to an individual or organization who has demonstrated a commitment to safety and injury prevention. “There have been many individuals who have contributed to creating a safe community. Marti stands out because of her continued commitment beyond her years of public service as Mayor of Morgantown”, said Dan Shook, Director of the West Virginia University-Greater Morgantown Safe Communities. Shook said, “We get together often to discuss other opportunities that would make our community safer. Marti has great depth and understanding of the community.”
Shamberger held public office in Morgantown as a city councilwoman and as mayor. She was a co-investigator on the application to the National Safety Council along with Colleen Harshbarger to become an accredited Safe Community. In a recent interview with WVU Today, WVU President E. Gordon Gee said, “Our designation as an accredited community in the Safe Communities America network is a milestone, but it is not the end of the road. We know that teamwork among our local leaders and the University makes Morgantown a safe place for our students, faculty and staff. What this process has shown is that we can make it even safer, and better, by applying the lessons learned elsewhere to our community.” As the former Mayor of Morgantown, Shamberger promoted events, ideas and strategies to improve the safety of the Greater Morgantown area. “During my early days leading the initiative, I referred to Marti as Mrs. Safe Community because she was constantly thinking and suggesting different things we could do to improve our community”, said Shook.
The West Virginia University-Greater Morgantown Safe Communities Initiative became the 28th community in the United States to be accredited as a Safe Community. The program is the first nationally and internationally to involve the scope of commitment between a university, city and county.