Building on the success of the first two NYC Neighborhood Library Awards, the Stavros Niarchos Foundation and the Charles H. Revson Foundation came together to give New Yorkers another chance to honor and celebrate their local libraries. The 3rd Annual NYC Neighborhood Library Awards launched on WNYC’s The Brian Lehrer Show on November 18th, 2015 and New Yorkers were invited to share their stories via hand-written and online nomination forms through December 18th, 2015.

As in past years, the third Awards aimed to highlight and recognize the amazing local libraries of NYC’s three public library systems: the Brooklyn Public Library; Queens Library; and the New York Public Library, which operates branches in the Bronx, Manhattan, and Staten Island. Bolstered by increased public awareness of the Awards and amplified by branch engagement with their patrons, the third Awards received close to 19,000 nominations, in 7 languages, during the 4-week nomination period!

At a ceremony on June 6th, 2016, the Revson Foundation and Stavros Niarchos Foundation announced the five winners of the 3rd Annual NYC Neighborhood Library Awards. In a new addition this year, a sixth winner was awarded the Heckscher Prize for Outstanding Service to Children and Youth and $20,000 by the Heckscher Foundation for Children. In addition to the six $20,000 winners, an additional five libraries won finalists awards and $10,000 each. These outstanding eleven libraries emerged from thousands of stories written by New Yorkers from across the five boroughs. Every one of the over 200 branch libraries in New York City received many heartfelt nominations illustrating the intrinsic role they play in their communities. Above all, the NYC Neighborhood Library Awards recognizes and commends the amazing library staff who work tirelessly and with few resources to bring incredible opportunities for knowledge, togetherness, and exploration to their communities!

All photos courtesy of Gerri Hernandez