On Sunday, June 3, 2012 the Northern Virginia Chapter of the ACLU mixed business with festivities, as it held its always-popular Annual Meeting and Crabfest at Fort Hunt Park in Alexandria, VA.
The annual event, a tradition for the NoVa Chapter, featured guest speaker Kent Willis, Executive Director of the ACLU of Virginia. He provided the audience--181 members and friends of the ACLU--his insightful 'story-behind-the-story' assessments of the various civil liberties-based issues, lawsuits, victories, and setbacks in Virginia thus far in 2012.
But this was a bittersweet event because Kent is retiring from his position, following 25 years of service to the Virginia ACLU as Executive Director and, previously, as Associate Director. In fact, participating at this event was his last official function as Executive Director. Numerous civil-liberties notables paid tribute to Kent at this NoVa Chapter event. For his part, Kent quipped that, during his attendance as guest speaker at a multitude of NoVa Chapter Annual Meetings/Crabfests over the years, he had never been able to eat even one crab. "And I LOVE crabs!" he underscored. "But next year," he then promised, "I'll be back here--as a member--and I plan to eat crabs for two hours. I may even challenge everybody to a crab-eating contest!" Stay tuned!