The Young Adult Services Division of the Nassau and Suffolk County Library Associations, sponsors the annual B.E.S.T (Bringing Excellence in Service by Teens) Award. This award recognizes significant contributions by a teenager in library service in each county.
This year, the award committee selected Manhasset Secondary School junior, Sophia Stefanakis to be the Nassau County recipient of the award. Nominated by Manhasset Library Youth Services Librarian, Luisa Muñoz, Stefanakis has been an active volunteer both at the library and in the community for the last several years.
In addition to participating in library volunteer opportunities, Stefanakis organized multiple initiatives to benefit local organizations. As co-founder of the nonprofit organization, Global Mental Health Community Network, Stefanakis and her friends partnered with the Manhasset Library to collect more than 400 pounds of food to donate to Island Harvest for Manhasset families in need, and more than 3,750 books to donate to The Book Fairies, a nonprofit organization that collects reading material for people in need throughout metropolitan New York.
This year the award was presented virtually at the joint meeting between Nassau and Suffolk Young Adult Services Divisions on April 8. Following the presentation, Stefanakis received her plaque and a stipend in person at the library in recognition of her contributions.
—Submitted by the Manhasset Public Library