, Derry, New Hampshire

December 27, 2012

Derry woman earns award for her acting skillls

By Julie Huss

---- — DERRY — Lorraine Butler’s list of awards and honors is growing.

The Derry woman was honored earlier this month with the Janet Smith Memorial Shining Star Award, given by the theater troupe Play Among the Stars.

For Butler, it’s another honor to her credit.

That credit includes the woman’s hard work for those who have disabilities.

Butler, 56, has a developmental disability, but has led a full life caring for not only herself, but also a grandmother for nine years.

She lives independently at her home on Sunset Circle. She advocates in her community for safety causes and other town issues she feels strongly about.

For her most recent award, Butler performed with Play Among the Stars, a group that gives those with disabilities a chance to shine on stage.

“We just got done with our Christmas show,” Butler said. “I was Mrs. Santa Claus.”

Butler said Play Among the Stars involves people of all ages. The Salem-based group performs throughout the year and hosts fundraisers and other activities to support its programs.

She has been with the group since its beginning.

“We have a lot of fun,” she said.

Butler has been honored in the past for her work for those with disabilities, including a People First of New Hampshire award for her self-advocacy leadership skills.

She is part of the People First board and also with the group People Power, that meets regularly.

Butler also advocated in Derry to get a streetlight installed in her neighborhood in 2010.

Being part of these groups and being a tireless supporter of her town gives her confidence, she said.