12/06/12 Dr. Kenneth P. O'Brien Wins State Archives Award

ALBANY -- The New York State Archives and the Archives Partnership Trust have selected Professor Kenneth P. O’Brien of the College at Brockport, State University of New York and President of the University Faculty Senate, and former Chairman of the State University of New York Board of Trustees, Carl T. Hayden, to be jointly awarded the 2012 William Hoyt Award for Advocacy.

The award was presented to Dr. O'Brien and Mr. Hayden at a luncheon ceremony at the Cultural Education Center in Albany, held recently. This award is named after the late Assemblyman William Hoyt from Buffalo, who was a staunch supporter of archives and records management in New York State.

The State University of New York (SUNY) is the largest comprehensive university system in the United States. Established in 1948, it enrolls more than 467,000 students in more than 7,500 degree and certificate programs on 64 campuses. In their respective roles, both of the awardees have been tireless advocates for the permanent preservation of the archival records of SUNY’s Central System Administration. Dr. O’Brien, who experienced difficulties locating information within the records of the Central Administration while compiling the history of the College at Brockport, launched a campaign to raise awareness of the need to preserve the essential evidence of this landmark system of higher education. He carried this interest and passion with him when he became President of the Faculty Senate and a member of the SUNY Board of Trustees. Dr. O’Brien, working with Carl Hayden, has been instrumental in obtaining the commitment of Chancellor Nancy Zimpher to set in motion the actions necessary to ensure that the archival records of the State University system will be available for scholars, students, administrators and any researcher seeking information about New York’s unique investment in higher education.

“For their broad vision, commitment, and sheer tenacity, we are pleased and honored to recognize Dr. Kenneth P. O’Brien and Carl T. Hayden for their advocacy to ensure the long-term preservation of the SUNY Central System Administration's most important records,” said State Archivist Christine Ward.

Previous winners of the William Hoyt Annual Archives Award for Advocacy include William Josephson, of Counsel at Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson, LLP (2011), Assemblyman Sam Hoyt and Senator Neil Breslin (2010); Thomas Clingan, Albany County Clerk (2009); Archivists Roundtable of Metropolitan New York (2006); Mary Lou Rath, Member of the New York State Senate (2004); Paul A. Tokasz, Majority Leader, New York State Assembly (2004); Hector Diaz, Bronx County Clerk (2004); Frank Merola, Rensselaer County Clerk (2004); and Patricia Bryce, Deputy Director, Albany County Hall of Records (2004).

The annual Archives Awards program recognizes outstanding efforts in archives and records management work in New York State by a broad range of individuals and organizations. A complete list of this year’s award recipients follows:

Excellence in State Agency Records Management
NYS Office of General Services

Cheryl Steinbach Award for Excellence in Local Government Records Management
Town of Somers (Westchester County)

William H. Kelly Award for Excellence in Local Government Archival Program Development
Livingston County

Program Excellence in a Historical Records Repository
Zadock Pratt Museum, Prattsville (Greene County)

Excellence in Research Using the Holdings of the State Archives
Dr. Tom Arne Midtrod, University of Iowa

William Hoyt Advocacy Award
Carl Hayden, former Chairman of the SUNY Board of Trustees
Dr. Kenneth P. O’Brien, Associate Professor of History at the College at Brockport
and President of the SUNY Faculty Senate

Bruce W. Dearstyne Award for Excellence in the Educational Use of Historical Records
Amber Quinn, Shenendehowa High School, Shenendehowa Central School District (Saratoga County)

Laura and Robert Chodos Award for Excellence in Student Research Using Historical Records, Grades 9-12
Jonah Mittler, Samuel Sommer and Max Summers, Great Neck South High School, Great Neck Union Free School District, Teacher: Frances Tria (Nassau County)

Laura and Robert Chodos Award for Excellence in Student Research Using Historical Records, Grades 6-8
Sarah Jones, Farnsworth Middle School, Guilderland Central School District,
Teacher: Deborah Escobar (Albany County)

Laura and Robert Chodos Award for Excellence in Student Research Using Historical Records, Grades 4-5
Millie Bohn, Murray Avenue School, Mamaroneck Union Free School District,
Teacher: Pamela Tanenbaum (Westchester County)