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June 16, 2017
Judge Marilyn Moores Receives Roberta West Nicholson Award

"I don't believe you can love your children, unless you love all children." -Roberta West Nicholson

Tough challenges regarding children never daunted Roberta West Nicholson, who began serving on Children's Bureau's Board of Directors in 1935 and remained an active honorary member until she died in 1987.

Judge Marilyn Moores, who has presided over the Marion County Juvenile Court since 2005, meets child welfare challenges head on today. So it is appropriate that Children's Bureau presented Moores with the 2017 award in Nicholson' name at its annual meeting.  

Nicholson was the only woman to serve in the 1935 Indiana State Legislature and helped pass the first social security legislation in the state. In the late 1930s, Nicholson and a few others fought the election of unqualified judges who staffed the Juvenile Court with cronies. They persuaded leaders of both political parties to form The Juvenile Court Bipartisan Committee, which became a model for judicial integrity.

A leader in the fight against venereal disease and a pioneer in sex education, she was a founder of the Maternal Health League (later Planned Parenthood). She established the Social Health Association in 1942 and served as director until 1960.

Nicholson remained true to her priority of child welfare and received many highly distinguished awards--honored for her common sense and uncommon courage, her perseverance in the fight against ignorance and prejudice and her commitment to social justice. 

Children's Bureau honors Judge Moores for continuing that legacy with strength and courage.