NCDMV honors Liverman

Published 12:00 am Saturday, July 5, 2008

AHOSKIE – When Betty Liverman traveled to Carver Creek in Raleigh to attend her retirement luncheon in May, she never expected to receive the coveted Order of the Long Leaf Pine award.

William Gore Jr., the commissioner of Motor Vehicles, presented the award to Liverman.

Liverman officially retired from the state of North Carolina on June 1 after more than 30 years of service. She was a driver’s license examiner at the DMV in Ahoskie for 10 years. She was also the hearing officer at the DMV for more than 20 years.

“I was shocked to receive the award,” she said. “I was thrilled that my work had been recognized; when you’re east of I- 95, you don’t think anyone knows what you are doing, but they do.”

The Order of the Long Leaf Pine is the highest honor the governor can bestow on a North Carolina citizen. The award was created in 1965.

Contributions to their communities, extra effort in their careers and many years of service to their organizations are some of the guidelines by which recipients are selected for this award.

The first verse of the official North Carolina toast states, “Here’s to the land of the long leaf pine, The summer land where the sun doth shine, Where the weak grow strong and the strong grow great, Here’s to ‘down home,’ the Old North State!”

However, Liverman’s retirement has not slowed her down; she is actively involved in the local Humane Society, PAWS, which she and Joanne Jones founded in March 2006.

“I love animals,” said Liverman.

Since its first adoption in August 2006, PAWS has assisted with finding homes for more than 1,500 dogs and cats.

According to Liverman, before the start of the shelter, the animals were euthanized.

“Something had to change,” she said.

According to Liverman, PAWS works to find animals good, loving homes. PAWS also encourages members of the community to volunteer and help with the animals; all of the 40 members of PAWS are volunteers.

“Every animal is a gift from God; every animal has value,” she said.

Both Jones and Liverman are certified animal cruelty investigators. When they receive calls that animals are being abused, whether they are being used for fighting or are kept in tiny cages with no food and water, they can go out and investigate. Liverman is also a certified rabies vaccinator for Hertford County.

Liverman added that PAWS is always accepting donations to help fund its programs. These programs include Meals on Wheels, which helps elderly people feed their animals, transporting animals to no- kill shelters and putting microchips in animals, which can be scanned to help track the animal if it is lost.

PAWS also conducts adoptions every Saturday from 9 a.m. – 12 noon, or at other times by appointment.

“It is important to get animals spayed and neutered so there are no unwanted animals,” she said. “If more people did this, we wouldn’t have so many animals in the shelter.”