B.A., Denison University
Citation awarded May, 1997
Betty Dancey Godard is a distinguished volunteer in the area of international economic aid. Since 1992, she has been active in initiatives to assist the Russian people in the development of a private economy through agriculture and cottage industries. Her role involves on-site leadership at the village level in Russia and vice-chairmanship of the board of the Russian Farm Community Project (RFCP), an enterprise initiated through the efforts of Churches Uniting in Global Mission. She travels frequently to U.S. cities to speak about RFCP.
Betty’s work also takes her to Russia, where the RFCP programs involve teams of agricultural experts, business executives, and other volunteers. The projects have been described as “nuts-and-bolts industrial development efforts.” For example, Betty’s group has spearheaded a private farming project, a farm cooperative and home industries for women. Farms involved in the effort have reported 300% productivity increases over four years. RFCP is also working to establish a village bank as well as to introduce the concept of business plans for budding enterprises.
Betty and her late husband Fred M. Godard ’46 owned and operated Fred Godard Ford in Tallmadge, Ohio for many years. She continues to head the company and she is also active locally with various civic organizations. She served as a volunteer in the Higher Ground campaign for Denison and has sponsored the studies of several international students at colleges around the nation.