2008 Lifetime Achievement Award

2008 DEA Educational Foundation Lifetime Achievement Award

Mrs. Betty Sembler (center) accepting the Foundation’s  2008 Lifetime Achievement Award from Mr. Bill Alden (left)  and Mrs. Lynne Cheney (right).

Mrs. Betty Sembler (center) accepting the Foundation’s 2008 Lifetime Achievement Award from Mr. Bill Alden (left) and Mrs. Lynne Cheney (right).

On March 6, 2008, more than 300 friends turned out to honor Mrs. Betty Sembler with the Foundation’s 2008 Lifetime Achievement Award, presented by DEA Educational Foundation President William Alden. The gala was held at Washington DC’s J.W. Marriott Hotel.

The Master of Ceremonies for the event was former DEA Administrator Jack Lawn, who was the first of many to pay tribute to Mrs. Sembler for her significant and long term positive contributions in support of drug law enforcement and drug abuse prevention education in the United States.

Mrs. Sembler’s impact has been felt for more than thirty years; beginning in 1976 when she helped found a nonprofit drug treatment program that successfully treated more than 12,000 young people with drug addiction nationally from Dallas, TX. to Boston, MA. Mrs. Sembler has actively participated in the White House Conference for a Drug Free America, as a member of the Governor’s Drug Policy Task Force in Florida, and as a board member of D.A.R.E. Florida.

Mrs. Sembler is the founder and president of Save Our Society From Drugs (S.O.S) and the Drug Free America Foundation, Inc. Currently, she serves on the board of D.A.R.E. International as vice-chairperson and on the Florida National Guard Multijurisdictional Counterdrug Training Advisory Board.
Surrounded by her children, grandchildren and husband Mel, former United States Ambassador to Australia and Italy, Mrs. Sembler received praise for her unwavering fight against the impact of illegal drugs in this country from John Walters Director of the Office of National Drug Policy; DEA Acting Administrator Michele Leonhart; former National Institute on Drug Abuse Dr. Robert DuPont, and finally by close friend Lynne Cheney, wife of United States
Vice President Richard Cheney.

A video tribute outlining Mrs. Sembler’s many accomplishments featured Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich; the Honorable Carlton E. Turner; the former White House Drug Policy Advisor and current President and CEO of Carrington Laboratories; former Florida Governor Jeb Bush; and Republican Congressman Mark Souder, from Indiana. Mrs. Sembler also received congratulatory letters from former First Lady Nancy Reagan, President George Bush and First Lady Laura Bush, Former DEA Administrator Peter Bensinger, Florida Governor Charlie Crist, Robin and Elliott Broidy, the Trustees and Scholars of Hudson Institute, and Dr. Miri and Sheldon Adelson.

Thanks to the many friends and supporters of Mrs. Betty Sembler, $300,000 was raised to benefit the mission of the DEA Educational Foundation as it continues to fight drugs through education.