2018 Hall of Legends To Honor Six

2018 Hall of Legends To Honor Six


The Howard County Hall of Legends will honor six new members at its annual recognition banquet Aug. 24. All are outstanding representatives of our county and models of accomplishment and leadership for Hoosiers young and not-so-young.

The inductees have made their mark in government, education, business, entertainment, the military, and service to those in need. They include Opha May Jacob Johnson, born in Howard County in 1878, who became America’s first female U.S. Marine, and Reba Harris, who began a second career in retirement as an addiction counselor and the founder and director of Gilead House. She has had a positive impact on more lives during her retirement years than most of us do in an entire lifetime. Don B. Smith Sr. came to Howard County as a banking entrepreneur, founded two banks, served the community in several volunteer leadership roles, and helped rebuild Russiaville after the Palm Sunday tornado. Steve Daily began his professional life as a teacher but took a turn to politics when he served as a city councilman and then became the youngest mayor in Kokomo history. He returned to education as an administrator at IU-Kokomo, then became chancellor of Ivy Tech’s Kokomo region, and “retired” to run an organic farm. Along the way, he served the county and the state in numerous leadership capacities, from economic development to social services. Brian Harlow grew up in neighboring Tipton County, but his impact on Howard County and central Indiana is indisputable. His career at Chrysler began with the Kokomo Transmission Plant and advanced to his role as the vice-president of Manufacturing for Fiat Chrysler Automobiles in North America. FCA’s growth in Indiana and its investment in the Kokomo and Tipton plants are directly attributable to his leadership. Finally, the Kokomo Park Band is the second organization chosen for inclusion in the Hall of Legends. As one of the county’s most enduring organizations, it has provided music for community events for well over a century. Today, its concerts in Highland Park are a weekly highlight of summer. 

The induction banquet will begin at 6 p.m. Aug. 24 at the Bel Air Event Center in Kokomo. Tickets may be purchased on-line through Eventbrite.com. You may also purchase them at the society’s office at 1218 W. Sycamore St. (behind Elliott House) or by calling 765-452-4314.

The Hall of Legends induction banquet is sponsored in part by: Mid-America Beverage and Ivy Tech Community College, along with Haynes International, the Kokomo Tribune, First Farmers Bank and Trust, THE COCA COLA BOTTLING COMPANY OF KOKOMO, and Salin Bank.

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