LSSI Honors True Friends Eric and Jodie Draut

Before 250 Amicus Certus Celebration guests, LSSI President and CEO Mark Stutrud presented Eric and Jodie Draut with the True Friend Award, which honors "significant contributions to the human community."

"They have a heart for service," Stutrud said, "I can't think of two people more deserving than Eric and Jodie Draut in recognition of the work, contributions, and support that they've given LSSI."

Accepting the award, Eric Draut said they draw inspiration from Paul's letter to the Ephesians, "It is God himself who has made us what we are, and who has given us new life through Jesus Christ. Long ago he planned that we should spend these lives helping others answering God's call."

Jodie Draut recognized staff who work with the more than 42,000 people annually served by LSSI and applauded their "living, daily confidence in God’s grace."

Elizabeth Vargas, award-winning journalist and author of Between Breaths: A Memoir of Panic and Addiction, gave the keynote address. "The work that [LSSI] does is absolutely extraordinary and is clearly changing lives," Vargas said. "Part of the reason I didn't seek help sooner is because I thought I was alone. By telling my story, other people out there who are secretly suffering might know that they're not alone either."

Julie Luck Jensen chaired the Amicus Certus Event Committee. The event raised $407,000, including a $152,000 matching gift by the Drauts.