James Nunnelly is recognized for his work on the Jackson County Drug Court

Former Jackson County COMBAT administrator James Nunnelly was honored Friday as an innovator who helped create the Jackson County Drug Court.

The recognition came from the Jackson County Circuit Court. When the Jackson County Drug Court was established in 1993, court officials said, it was the second one nationwide.

“Twenty years later, countless lives have been changed because of the emphasis on drug treatment rather than incarceration for drug-related charges,” said a news release from the circuit court.

An award, created in Nunnelly’s name, is to be given occasionally to a deserving graduate of the drug court. The first was presented Friday to a woman who graduated earlier in the day.

The Star