The Hoosier State’s premier pro-family organization marks its 25th anniversary with a keynote address by former board member, and now- Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, as it also honored State Sen. Mike Delph with its “Legislator of the Year Award,” during the annual Friends of the Family fundraising dinner at the Ritz Charles on Sept. 18.
“They are expecting roughly 500 attendees at the Ritz Charles,” stated Delph in an email to Current, before the event. “This is the same dinner where former Colts Coach Tony Dungy was awarded the Friend of the Family Award for holding similar cultural views as me based upon time tested biblical principles a few years back.”
This year’s gathering featured a keynote address by the Governor, who served on the IFI Board of Directors with his wife, Karen, in the early 90s. IFI was led at that time by Bill Smith, who later served as the Governor’s Congressional and then Gubernatorial Chief of Staff. Bill Smith will also take part in the anniversary celebration along with Kokomo attorney and former State Senator James Butcher, who has served as an IFI director since its formation in late 1989.
Prior to the dinner at a reception for key sponsors, IFI presented Delph with its “Legislator of the Year” award for his outstanding work to strengthen Hoosier families. The only prior recipient of the award, in 2011, was State Rep. Eric Turner.
Delph’s support of the proposed marriage amendment as well as his commitment to religious liberty and legislative ethics reform were among the factors cited by IFI in making this selection. His service to the nation as a US Army officer was also cited by IFI as a factor making Delph a well-informed legislative leader.
“We value and respect Sen. Delph’s unswerving commitment to faith, family and freedom, the pillars of what makes Indiana such a special place to call home,” said IFI President Curt Smith.
“Delph’s convictions, character and commitment to uphold these Hoosiers ideals makes him an ideal honoree,” added Ryan McCann, the group’s Policy Director.