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Hospital honors former Evanston mayor

Wednesday, June 03, 2009
Pioneer Press

Bows were placed on chairs and flowers on tables in the St. Francis Hospital dining room Tuesday morning, as close to 200 people gathered for a special reception honoring retired Evanston Mayor Lorraine H. Morton.

"It was beautiful,' said St. Francis spokeswoman Margo Schafer. "It looked like a wedding."

The hospital honored Morton with its first annual C.A.R.E.S Award. The award honors the community member who has exhibited the values of Saint Francis Hospital and Resurrection Care of "compassion, accountability, respect, excellence and service," Schafer said.

Morton was chosen to receive the award by a selection committee composed of the Saint Francis executive team and other leaders.

"We look to Lorraine as a heartfelt example of what it means to serve the community with dignity, grace, good humor and respect," said Angelique Richard, vice president of Patient Care Services.

The mayor spent 25 years in public office, starting as alderman of the 5th Ward, and then as mayor, starting in 1993. She retired from a 35-year career with the District 65 school system, including a stint as principal at Haven Middle School.

"Mayor Morton learned as a principal and teacher to protect and defend her students," said Cook County Commissioner Larry Suffredin, D-13th, joining in the honoring. "As a mayor she has been the protector of the health and safety of all her Evanston constituents. She has fought to enrich the lives of those she represented and has helped all learn to be better people."

In receiving the award, Morton made note of St. Francis Hospital's recent designation as one of the nation's top 20 "Best Places to Work in Healthcare."

"It is a gem that is shining with a brilliance that will not go away," she said.

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