Patroon award presented to woman for decades of service to Schenectady

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SCHENECTADY, NY (WRGB) The highest award in the City of Schenectady has been awarded to the first female mayor of Schenectady, Karen Johnson.

On Monday, the Patroon Award was presented by Mayor Gary McCarthy to Karen Johnson, whose effort were key in saving Proctors Theater from being torn down.

"For Karen, Proctors was an expression of passion. For Proctors, it would not be what it is today without Karen's care and passion," said Proctors CEO Philip Morris.

She was elected to the City Council in 1975, and became City Council President in 1983. That same year, she made history as the first woman elected as Mayor of Schenectady.

She was then re-elected in 1987 and served as President of the New York Conference of Mayors in 1991.

She was elected to the Schenectady County Legislature in 2001, where she currently serves as Vice-Chair of the Legislature, and as Chair of the Health & Human Services Committee.

"Karen Johnson is a monumental leader in our community and I am honored to recognize her with this award," said Mayor McCarthy.

The Patroon Award was inaugurated on March 1, 1954 by Mayor Archibald Wemple, McCarthy noted, and was originally awarded to seven former mayors.

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