Gov. Scott Gives Merritt Island Author Great Floridian Award

By  //  June 17, 2013

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ABOVE VIDEO: Gov. Rick Scott visits the home of Merritt Island’s Pulitzer Prize nominated author Patrick Smith. Scott presented Smith a “Great Floridian Award” and got Smith’s autograph on a copy of Smith’s “A Land Remembered.”  (Video Courtesy of FOX 35 WOFL.)

Gov. Scott Hands the Great Floridian Award to Patrick Smith in his Merritt Island home. Smith wrote historic novels about Florida & Indian tribes.

Gov. Scott Hands the Great Floridian Award to Patrick Smith in his Merritt Island home. Smith wrote historic novels about Florida & Indian tribes.

BREVARD COUNTY, MERRITT ISLAND, FLORIDA — Pulitzer Prize & Noble Prize-nominated author & Merritt Island resident Patrick Smith was honored by Florida Governor Rick Scott.

Smith  received the Governor’s “Great Floridian” award , which is presented to men and women who have made significant contributions to the progress and welfare of Florida.

“Patrick Smith touches the hearts of readers with his tale of Florida’s history, A Land Remembered, ” Governor Scott said, “Mr. Smith vibrantly captures the true essence of what makes Florida the best place in the nation – our strong families. It is an honor to have Florida’s history told by such a talented, world-renowned author, and to be able to present him with a “Great Floridian” award.”

Smith was born in  Mendenhall, Miss and moved to Florida in 1966. His work as an author was nominated three times for the Pulitzer Prize and once for the Noble Prize for Literature.

In 1973 for Forever Island, which was a 1974 selection of Reader’s Digest Condensed Books both in the English language edition and in all of the worldwide foreign language editions; in 1978 for Angel City, which was produced as a “Movie of the Week” for the CBS television network; and in 1984 for A Land Remembered, which was an Editors’ Choice selection of the New York Times Book Review. Smith’s lifetime work was also nominated for the 1985 Nobel Prize for Literature.

His historical novel,”A Land Remembered”, is located in every school and library in the state, as well as the Governor’s Mansion.Smith’s other books include,  “The River Is Home”, “The BeginningForever Island”,” Angel City”, “Allapattah”, “The Seas That Mourn”, and a story collection titled: ” A White Deer.” He is also co-author of the non-fiction book The Last Ride, and author of the non-fiction book In Search of the Russian Bear.

“It is an honor to receive a Great Floridian award from Governor Scott,”  Smith said. “I am proud to have written about the struggles and successes of Florida and her families.”

Only 71 individuals since 1981 have been given this distinct honor. Past honorees include former governors, civil rights activists, military heroes, Florida Supreme Court Justices and others.

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