Award: HONORING WOMEN IN NEW YORK
Jane Backus retired after 25 years of teaching seniors and sophomores at both Ogdensburg Free Academy and Mexico Academy and Central Schools.
While at Mexico Academy, Ms. Backus was three times the advisor for Los Inteligentes, a chapter of National Honor Society. She is also especially proud of contributing to the design of the school’s Senior Quest Program, a collegiate-level initiative that allowed students to identify and research a topic of personal interest, culminating in a paper based on fi eld experience and presented to a panel. Ms. Backus is also past president and scholarship chairperson of MACS Dollars for Scholars, and under her leadership, the organization has been able to raise thousands of dollars for several hundred students in the community wishing to attend college.
Ms. Backus is known to lend a hand in any way to help the school and her students. Many of her former students have said that if not for Ms. Backus’ encouragement, they might not have graduated. One student in particular went on to become a teacher as a direct result of Ms. Backus’ dedication and compassion.
A dedicated and active member of her community, Ms. Backus has served on the SUNY Oswego College Council for fi ve years, editing the Mother Goose Nursery School newsletter, volunteering for the Mexico JROTC program and cooking for the Mexico Methodist Church “Monday Meal.” She is currently a sacristan and lector at St. Anne, Mother of Mary Catholic Church and serves on United States Congressman Richard Hanna’s Military Academy Review Committee.
Locally, Ms. Backus is known for always thinking of others before herself—consistently being the fi rst person to off er a ride, a meal for a family in need or a shoulder to lean on.
She is the wife of Mark Backus, publisher and owner of the Oswego County Weeklies, and is the mother of two sons – Oswego County Clerk Michael C. Backus and Staff Sergeant Robert P. Backus, of the United States Marine Corps. Ms. Backus’ favorite and newest endeavor is sharing time with her granddaughter, Madelynne.