NEWARK, NJ — The New Jersey Association of School Librarians is awarding its annual Administrator of the Year title to Roger León, superintendent of Newark Public Schools, for his support of school libraries in Newark. 

NJASL issues the award each year to a school, library or district administrator who demonstrates a record of creating and improving school library media programs and helped advance media centers as a way to uplift schools.

“Under State Control, Roger León fought cuts to School Libraries and was able to convince the various school principals to retain their media specialists,” said Margaret Adjoga-Otu, the media specialist who nominated León. “Since León’s tenure, there has been a tremendous retention of SLMSs. Not one SMLS or School Library Program has been cut in the last 3 years.” 

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León, a Newark native who has worked in the district for 25 years, has taught K-8, acted as a principal and later became deputy chief academic officers for Curriculum, Instruction and Student Support Services. 

“I learned and, now as Superintendent, I bring with me this clear understanding that it is about learning to read and reading to learn,” León said. "We know that the way we will answer this digital divide is with our librarians in school." 

NJASL said that León is passionate about education, Newark and progress, which drives his support for strong school library programs in New Jersey’s largest school district.