LEC Speaker Series opens with children's advocate Elizabeth Smart

Posted: January 9, 2013

HOWELL – The Livingston Economic Club Speaker Series presents Elizabeth Smart, Thursday, March 7, 11:30 a.m.-2 p.m. at the Johnson Center on the campus of Cleary University. Tickets are $45 or $320 for a table of eight. Tickets are available by calling Grace Farley at 1-800-686-1883.

“We always are searching for compelling stories from speakers and Elizabeth Smart’s story certainly is compelling,” said Grace Farley, coordinator of the event.

Smart, the victim of a kidnapping in 2002, is the founder of the Elizabeth Smart Foundation, which seeks to educate the public and lawmakers about child abductions. She also promotes the National AMBER Alert and the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act.

“Too many families experience the nightmare of having a child go missing. I know what it is like to be that child,” said Smart. “I know what it is like to think that one false move may lead to not only your own death, but the death of family members as well. Nobody can ever blame a child for their actions when they are being threatened, bullied, forced, or coerced into doing something unthinkable. That is why the foundation was created.”

Smart was kidnapped in 2002 from her home in Salt Lake City, Utah. She was 14-years-old at the time. After an extensive search and investigation, Smart was found nine months later in a town about 18 miles from her home. She had been abducted by a man and a woman, Brian David Mitchell and Wanda Barzee. Both are currently serving jail sentences for the crime.

Cleary University is proud to sponsor the Livingston Economic Club luncheon series to students and, in partnership with area chambers of commerce, the larger community. The mission of the Livingston Economic Club is to enrich the Livingston County community by hosting speakers who can share a broad spectrum of social, political, intellectual and cultural experiences.

Cleary University (cleary.edu) is an independent, not-for-profit, multi-campus, specialized business university, committed to the betterment of society through the success of its alumni and their employers; to operate as a role model of responsible business practice; to embrace quality management principles, innovation, and an attentive customer focus; and to aspire to a better future.

Cleary’s mission is to provide a practical, application-based education, which equips students to advance their careers.