New Paltz Professor Emerita to receive 2012 New York State Art Educator of the Year Award

NEW PALTZ – The Art Education Program of the State University of New York at New Paltz is pleased to announce that Professor Emerita Margaret Johnson, Ph.D., will be given the 2012 New York State Art Educator of the Year Award by the New York State Art Teachers Association (NYSATA). Dr. Johnson will be presented with the award at the NYSATA annual conference to be held in Rochester, NY., Nov. 16-18.

Partial criteria for the award includes: development of an outstanding art education program at the local and/or state level; contributions to curriculum design at the local and/or state level; development of a philosophy and theory of art education that reflects best practice and is visible both in and outside of the classroom; and commitment and dedication to the field of art education through strong advocacy, compassion, and helpfulness to students and colleagues.

Professor Emerita Margaret Johnson

“This award underscores a most important aspect of my tenure at SUNY New Paltz: that of creating a strong relationship with New York’s art teachers so that our students can work with mentors and future colleagues,” Johnson said.

Johnson previously received the 2011 NYSATA Region 7 Art Educator of the Year Award and the 2007 Special Citation from the NYSATA for initiating, developing, and hosting the annual SUNY New Paltz/NYSATA-Region 7 Art Teachers Symposia. Starting in 2006, Johnson collaborated to present an annual SUNY New Paltz/NYSATA-7 symposium for regional art teachers and art education majors. The symposium themes ranged from special needs in art education, to working with museums, using technology, and assessment. Each spring, she brought nationally recognized speakers to campus. Lectures were combined with workshops for the day-long event. New Paltz’s National Art Education Association (NAEA) student chapter worked as assistants and ambassadors, serving with remarkable professionalism.

Johnson has been an art educator for 40 years. She started her teaching career in New Hampshire where she taught middle level and high school art for 15 years. Upon receiving a sabbatical from the school district, she began doctoral studies at Florida State University. Johnson was recruited in 1987 to teach at the Winthrop University in South Carolina. There, she did extensive work with curriculum development throughout the state for 14 years. She moved to New York in 2001 to teach at SUNY New Paltz and served as director of the Art Education Program until her retirement in 2011.

Johnson has written for Art Education, School Arts, Journal of Aesthetic Education, and Young Children (the professional journal of the National Association for the Education of Young Children). She co-authored a book on early childhood learning in art, The Colors of Learning: Integrating the Arts into the Early Childhood Curriculum (Teachers College Press, 2003).