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Librarian ‘Making A Difference’ With Second Chances

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(credit: CBS) Amelia Santaniello
Amelia co-anchors the 5 p.m., 6 p.m. and 10 p.m. news Monday thr...
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By Amelia Santaniello, WCCO-TV

ST. PAUL (WCCO) — Twice a month, WCCO-TV gets to do something pretty fun — surprise someone who’s helping others. This week’s Making a Difference award is going to a librarian. Not just any librarian — Marilyn Mauritz believes in second chances even if you goofed up and lost a book.

Misplaced books and mounting fines — they’re enough to make you stop using the library. That’s when you could use a “fixer” like Mauritz.

When the Humboldt High School librarian’s not helping kids find books, she’s helping them get back in good graces with the public library.

“I worked at the public library for eight years as my second job, so I know how to kind of get some help there,” she said.

Her friend, Dianne Hopen, nominated Mauritz for the award.

“And she’ll call and say, that was in another lifetime, they were little, they were young, they didn’t understand,” said Hopen.

“So we go down there and clear up their record, then I get ‘em a library card, and get ‘em back on track,” said Mauritz.

Mauritz isn’t just a “fixer.”  She’s a “finder.”

“When you talk with her, she’ll say, ‘Oh I went to Barnes and Noble, I went to this bookstore, I went to that book store, I went to Half-Price and I got this book for this one kid and I didn’t think I was going to find it,” recalled Hopen “Or I ordered these and I asked them to rush it, because if I don’t get that book to those kids by tomorrow, I might lose ‘em.”

Even the students at Humboldt feel there isn’t a book out there that she can’t track down.

Mauritz stocks a lot of Mangas — graphic novels, perfect for her kids, most of whom speak English as their second language.

Marilyn Mauritz is a librarian who doesn’t just love books. She loves the people who read them too.

Mauritz is so devoted to her students that she goes to their concerts and games, and takes pictures to post them online. She even has former students come back when they can’t find a book they need.

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