Awards and Honors Committee

Committee Members | Purpose and Objectives

The Awards and Honors Committee reviews nominations for the OLC annual awards program and recommends to the OLC Board of Directors recipients for the various awards and honors that recognize outstanding performance by library staff members, trustees and Friends group members.


Committee Members

Maria Sferra, Chair (2019)
Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County
Work: (513) 369-4419

Michelle Ramsell, Asst. Chair (2020)
Tuscarawas County Public Library
Work: (330) 364-4474 x237

Jennifer Welsh, Past Chair (2019)
Stark County District Library
Work: (330) 458-2734

Amy Abernathy (2021)
MidPointe Library System
Work: (513) 705-8515

Tim Hagen (2021)
Toledo Lucas County Public Library
Work: (419) 259-5249

Missy Lodge (2019)

Brett Neff (2021)
Akron-Summit County Public Library
Work: (330) 643-9000

Erin Wen (2020)
Dayton Metro Library
Work: (937) 496-8522

Board Liaison: Lynn Mercer

Purpose and Objectives

The principal charge of the Awards and Honors Committee is to recommend to the OLC Board of Directors recipients for the various established awards and solicit nominations and supporting materials from members of the library community.

Such solicitation may be accomplished through OLC publications, conference coverage, listservs, or by any other means the Committee deems both appropriate and applicable.

The Committee’s recommendations to the Board will include biographical information on the recipients as well as professional accomplishments, OLC sustained involvement, and other qualifying data related to the award criteria that made that particular person or group stand out as the best in its category. Award recommendations must be submitted to the OLC Board for formal approval at its July meeting.

Award recipients and nominators will be notified by the Committee and in writing by the OLC Executive Director, and if applicable, will also include correspondence to the Library Director and Board President.

Committee members will author/modify the Awards and Honors materials for presentation at the OLC Annual Convention and Expo, as well as oversee all publicity associated with the announcement of the awards.

The Awards and Honors Committee administers the following awards:

  • Hall of Fame Librarian
  • Librarian of the Year
  • Service Excellence Award
  • Diana Vescelius Emerging Leader Award
  • John Philip Outreach Award
  • Trustee/Board of Trustees Award of Achievement
  • Ohio Friends of the Library Recognition Award
  • Library Innovation Award


  • Review new Awards and Honors process and make recommendations.
  • Promote participation in the awards process in various and creative ways.
  • Develop innovative ways to honor past and present award recipients.