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What We Do

Cultivating good character in Martin County since 1996!
CHARACTER COUNTS! is a collaborative of community organizations, schools, businesses and individual citizens committed to the development and enhancement of individual and community character.
The "Six Pillars of Character" - Trustworthiness, Responsibility, Respect, Fairness, Caring, Citizenship - serve as guideposts for the countless choices children and adults are asked to make on a daily basis.

The Six Pillars of Character


Be Honest. Don't deceive, cheat or steal. Be reliable: Do what you say you'll do. Have the courage to do the right thing. Build a good reputation. Be loyal: Stand by your family, friends and country.


Treat others with respect; follow the Golden Rule. Be tolerant of differences. Use good manners; not bad language. Be considerate of the feelings of others. Don't threaten, hit or hurt anyone. Deal peacefully with anger, insults and disagreements.


Do what you are supposed to do. Persevere: Keep on trying. Always do your best. Use self control; be self-disciplined. Think before you act: Consider the consequences. Be accountable for your choices.


Play by the rules. Take turns and share. Be open-minded; listen to others. Don't take advantage of others. Don't blame others carelessly.


Be kind. Be compassionate and show you care. Express gratitude. Forgive others. Help people in need.


Be an active member of society. Commit to volunteering. Do your share to make your school and community better. Cooperate. Stay informed; Vote.
Be a good neighbor. Obey laws and rules. Respect authority. Protect the environment.


  • Blake Norman, Marsh & McLennan Agency, Chair
  • Dot Brooking, Tykes & Teens, Inc.
  • Missi Campbell, Crystal Lake Elementary School
  • Victoria Defenthaler, Community Volunteer
  • Bianca Fathauer, One Call Property Services, Inc.
  • Cara Gabrielson, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Palm Beach and Martin Counties
  • Theresa Iuliucci, Martin County School District Committee
  • Mark Lively, Lively Orthodontics
  • Dianne Pierce, Community Volunteer
  • Gary Sparks, Martin County School District Committee
  • Rob Tweeddale, Kowalski, Tweeddale & Associates / Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith, Inc.
  • Robyn Vanover, University of South Florida
  • Michelle Villwock, Martin County School District Committee
  • Mary White, Martin County School District Committee
  • Carol Houwaart-Diez, President/CEO, United Way of Martin County
  • Holly Laiben, Director, CHARACTER COUNTS!
For more information about CHARACTER COUNTS! contact Holly Laiben at 772-283-4800 ext. 234 or