By BOBBY WARREN Staff Writer Published: October 11, 2016 4:00 AM on http://www.the-daily-record.com/local%20news/2016/10/11/noble-family-re…
WOOSTER -- Growing up, Dave Noble's mother, Alice, was active in promoting wellness, long before it was a buzzword or lifestyle.
His father, Don Noble, was very much interested in the well-being of the workers when he led Rubbermaid, as he was in the overall health of the community.
While his parents are deceased, their commitment to wellness, well-being and community health continues through the work Noble does with the Donald and Alice Noble Foundation. The efforts of Noble, his wife, Gayle (who could not make it to the event), and his family were recognized at the Mental Health & Recovery Board of Wayne & Holmes Counties' annual meeting Thursday at Memories Party & Conference Center.
Executive Director Judy Wortham Wood presented Noble with the Shining Light Award, presented to a "shining star" who makes this area "a community worth living in."
The night was a celebration of recovery for those people struggling with mental health and substance abuse issues and a time to focus on building a recovery-oriented system of care, and in the midst was this recognition of the Noble family for the time and financial backing they have put into recovery.
The Noble Foundation, and other community partners, helped purchase a historic building on Beall Avenue that now is a recovery house and provides residential treatment. Contributions help with transportation services for those in recovery to engage in peer support at NAMI Wayne/Holmes.
When Wood first visited the Pathways Residential Treatment program in the Noble House on Beall Avenue after it opened several years ago, she recalled how the men there were so impressed because Noble came to visit them.
They were genuinely touched by his caring and his support, and Wood said it was something she will never forget.
One of the recovery houses at OneEighty (formerly Liberty Center Connections/STEPS) is named in memory of Noble's nephew, Stephen Holland, who died of an opiate overdose.
At the dedication of Stephen's House, Noble's sister, Nancy Holland, shared about Stephen's death and the family's commitment to recovery.
Noble's philanthropy has been recognized for a variety of projects, whether the Oak Hill Park in Wooster or helping to rebuild a village, Wooster Nagar, in India. However, Wood wanted people to know and appreciate Noble's work as a recovery advocate.
It took quite a bit of convincing. Noble did not want to be recognized, Wood said. She had to put her foot down.
"He's a humble man who doesn't want to be recognized," Wood said. She told him it was important to celebrate recovery together.
"Judy, it's not often someone calls me humble," the retired trial lawyer said before addressing the entire group. "What you are doing is enormously, enormously important. It is a special award because it comes from people who understand and employ the greatest paradox: The very best thing a person can do is to help someone else.
"This is what makes it such a great honor. Thank you for what you do for others; thank you for what you do in the community; and thank you for this recognition."
Reporter Bobby Warren can be reached at 330-287-1639 or firstname.lastname@example.org. He is @BobbyWarrenTDR on Twitter.