Maria Johnson and Chris Sagaas are being recognized for outstanding service to to their local communities. State Sen. Peter Oberacker presented Certificates of Recognition to Johnson and Sagaas during a special ceremony in Albany.

““Our libraries are vital community resources and our librarians do an incredible job,” Oberacker said in a statement sent to CNY News. “In many of the towns and villages that I represent, the local library hosts public meetings, delivers key services to residents young and old, and is the most recognizable building in the community.”

The New York State Senate Outstanding Librarian Awards are given annually to librarians from each region of the state. Both Johnson and Sagaas live in Oberacker’s 51st State Senate District.  Johnson resides in Oneonta and is a Library Media Specialist at Roxbury Central School.  Sagaas calls Herkimer home and is director of the Utica Public Library.

In his statement, Oberacker highlighted the importance of libraries in educational settings.

“Our school libraries are often the first connection with reading for many and continue to have a winning influence on the development of our young people,” Oberacker said.

The 2022 awards took into account the challenges librarians faced because of the Covid 19 pandemic and the creative solutions employed by library staffs to keep patrons safe and employees healthy.

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