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Published: Tuesday, 9/25/2007

Ethics official honored for BWC probe


COLUMBUS - The international Council of Government Ethics Law has awarded David E. Freel, executive director of the Ohio Ethics Commission, its highest honor for contributions related to governmental ethics.

Most recently working with a multiagency task force investigating scandals within the Ohio Bureau of Workers' Compensation, Mr. Freel was presented with the award last week at the international group's annual conference in Vancouver.

The award has previously gone to the likes of Jimmy Carter for his work in promoting democracy in the world since leaving the White House and U.S. Sens. John McCain and Russ Feingold for their campaign finance reform efforts.

The Council of Government Ethics Law is a professional organization of boards and commissions, academics, organizations, and individuals with responsibilities in governmental ethics, elections, campaign finance, lobby laws, and freedom of information.

"The members of COGEL have done so much to promote governmental integrity throughout the world," said Mr. Freel, 55, of Worthington. "I am deeply honored to accept this award from an internationally respected ethics organization."

Executive director since 1994, Mr. Freel is a former president of COGEL. He received the organization's Outstanding Service Award in 2002.

Before joining the commission, Mr. Freel worked with the Ohio State University college of law clinical programs and was a trial attorney with the Franklin County Public Defender's Office. He received his bachelor's degree in social science from Ohio State in 1974 and his law degree from Capital University in 1977.

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