Press release from the issuing company
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania - Printing Industries of America is pleased to announce that the recipient of the 2010 Naomi Berber Award is Wilma Grant. The Berber Award recognizes a woman in the printing industry who has an outstanding record of accomplishments that demonstrate her contribution toward the development of the graphic communications industry; Wilma Grant has embodied this mentality since her early career days and has a list of accomplishments attributed to her passion and hard work in the field.
Wilma Grant was born near Glasgow, Scotland. When she was fifteen years old, her father John, a mining manager, passed away. To help her mother, Janet, make ends meet, she left school and worked at a wholesale grocers for a time while also attending hairdressing and beauty college, before starting her own business--mobile hairdressing. At 17, she decided she wanted to see the world and enlisted in the military. She completed basic training in England then was placed at Royal Air Force HQ--RAF Medmenham in Marlowe, Bucks, U.K. She spent three years working on NATO and RAF work during crises in Cyprus and Aden. Typesetting and communications in those days entailed having the ability to read and punch 5-, 6-, or 8-hole paper tape. Reading/punching that tape could be equated to learning/translating a foreign language
Three years later, demobilized from the military, she married a U.S. serviceman in Scotland and eventually traveled to the United States with her husband. He was stationed at the Pentagon and she found a typesetting job at a newspaper in Virginia and has remained in the printing industry since. She later worked in the commercial book and job industry in Washington, then at The Washington Post and The Wall Street Journal. In 1980 she accepted a position with the U.S. Government as a phototypesetter. A few years later she became the Supreme Court's "Secure In-Plant Manager" of the Publications Department/Office of Information Technology. She has worked there for the last thirty years and has directed the legal book publishing/typesetting and production of U.S. Reports, Preliminary Prints, Bench Opinions, Slip Opinions, and related products. She also has responsibility for all other in-plant printing, design/graphics, print-on-demand, data conversions, and electronic product delivery of Court documents for the Court's Hermes telecommunication transmissions and for the Court's website. Protecting the security of all such documents on site and backups going off-site fall under her management responsibility, as does Disaster Recovery for Print, an important task for many print managers. In addition, Wilma Grant is responsible for the safety and security of all documents handled by her department, including landmark cases such as Bush v. Gore; U.S. v. Nixon. Cases heard here are on constitutional relevance; thousands of petitions are filed annually to that end. As printers each of us can agree that meeting "print" deadlines can be rough, but another responsibility is the expeditious handling of orders in death cases from all states.
Following graduation from George Mason University's Executive MBA Program in 1995, Wilma pioneered the reengineering of the Court's Publications Unit with the addition of networked print-on-demand and color technology; open architecture system; expanded data conversion services; Hermes telecommunications and BBS support; imaging support; extending composition and binding services; and creating an ergonomically attractive printing department. The MBA Program included attendance at Oxford University in England and meetings with dignitaries in Luxembourg, Paris, Belgium, and Holland.
Rivaling her professional endeavors are her numerous honors and accomplishments in the printing industry:
- Elected three times as President of the Federal Reprographics Association, which attracted members from more than 40 government agencies.
- Elected and served as President, Vice President, and Editor/E-Publisher of the Federal Electronics Document System Association (FEDS) newsletter.
- Elected/served as President, Vice President, Scholarship Chair Franklin Technical Society.
- Served five years Electronic Document Systems Foundation as a Scholarship Director.
- Served three years on the Xplor International/Hewlett-Packard Joint Global Technology Council.
- Chairman of Board Xplor International (2 years); International Secretary (4 years)
- Director Xplor International – Mid-Atlantic Region.
- Elected and served two years as President of The Association of Reporters of Judicial Decisions (Court Legal Publishers). ARJD Presidency is usually limited to one year, normally a lawyer holds the presidency. U.S. Courts and several international countries are represented. She hosted meetings in Alaska and Pittsburgh.
- Member of The Defense Intelligence Roundtable, The Government Printing & Information Council, and the National Small Business Coalition.
- Honored by the Supreme Court with a Superior Service Award and Special Achievement Award-presented by Chief Justice William Rehnquist.
- Received Pentagon 9/11 Award from Sterling Volunteer Rescue Squad (SVRS) for going above and beyond the call of duty during a state of national emergency.
- Also SVRS Life Member, and twice named Administrative Member-of-the-Year.
- Currently serves as Member Appreciation Chair and Annual Banquet Chair.
- Member of Governor of Virginia's NOVA8 Disaster Taskforce.
- Served as the Combined Federal Campaign Chair, and Co-Chair, for the Supreme Court, which provides charitable support from Federal Agency staff to thousands of charities annually.
- Chaired U.S. Marine Corps Toys for Tots annual fund drive at Court for twenty years.
Wilma Grant closes her résumé by saying, "You name it, I've probably done it, and if not I am up to any challenge laid before me. I enjoy a wonderful career in public and community service and love association work, member networking, and giving."
Wilma credits her parents for teaching her the responsibility of work and the joy of sharing and helping others.
The Berber Award will be presented at Printing Industries of America's Fall Administrative Meetings, November 11–14, 2010, in San Francisco, CA. This forum hosts an impressive audience of industry leaders, including boards of directors and committee members from Printing Industries of America, its Ben Franklin Honor Society, and the Print and Graphics Scholarship Foundation (PGSF).
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