Kanawha County Commissioner Kent Carper, left, poses with his wife Deborah and Gov. Joe Manchin after Manchin surprised Carper with a Distinguished West Virginian award last week. (Photo courtesy of Carolyn Charnock, Metro 911)
CHARLESTON -- It was one of the rare moments when Kent Carper was speechless.
Carper, president of the Kanawha County Commission and a partner in the Charleston law firm of Hill, Peterson, Carper, Bee & Deitzler, was honored by Gov. Joe Manchin on July 6 for his work on behalf of Kanawha County.
Carper went to the Governor's Office for what he thought was a meeting with Manchin on issues important to Kanawha County. After a brief conversation in the governor's private office, Manchin led Carper to the main reception area where about 50 people -– family, friends and colleagues –- had gathered for the surprise presentation of the Distinguished West Virginian award.
Manchin presented it to Carper, citing his leadership in saving the seat of state government in Kanawha County and for his participation in the efforts to save the National Guard's 130th unit from elimination.
Kanawha County Commissioner Hoppy Shores, who was in attendance, credit Carper with his tireless devotion to saving the people of Kanawha County taxpayer dollars each and every day.
"I'm speechless," the usually locaqious Carper said upon receiving the surprise citation.
He did, however, recover and made remarks of appreciation that included thanking his wife, and honoring his children and four grandsons for their support.