California Preservation Foundation Awards

Often we spend so much time considering new approaches to preservation and looking uphill to what needs to be done, that we forget what has been done and the amazing preservation accomplishments happening right now.  For this reason I was pleasantly surprised to receive an email from Vortex Public Relations announcing the California Preservation Foundation’s 25th Annual Preservation Awards.  Set for October 18, 2008 in Long Beach, California, this two day event kicks off with a sunset cruise on October 17.  Quoted from the press release:

CPF’s annual Preservation Design Awards recognize outstanding achievement in the areas of preservation and highlight numerous notable preservation efforts and projects throughout California.  The lengthy competitive process involves a stellar panel of experts who carefully review hundreds of entries. After months of painstaking review and consideration, the PDA Jury selects a handful of projects which are held to the highest standards that conform to the Secretary of Interior’s [Standards] for the Treatment of Historic Properties.

The nine preservation design categories considered for these awards are: preservation, rehabilitation, restoration, reconstruction, contextual fill-in, sustainability, cultural resource studies (reports), craftsmanship / preservation technology, and archaeology & interpretive exhibits.


From the award categories alone, it sounds like the 25th Annual Awards will put on a stellar show!  It is great to see the definition of preservation expanded with so many related and presented in that manner. California Preservation Foundation describes itself as:

Founded in 1977, the California Preservation Foundation is a statewide nonprofit organization dedicated to the preservation of California’s diverse cultural and architectural heritage. With over 1,500 members, we are the state’s leading voice for historic preservation, as well as its most valuable source for preservation-related assistance. The Foundation is governed by a Board of Trustees and is proud to partner with the National Trust for Historic Preservation and Californians for Preservation Action.

If you browse through the website, you will see the many projects they have accomplished and the assistance CPF has offered to California.  With 31 years of operation, CPF seems to be a strong force in historic preservation.  While many of us are fledgling preservationists and 31 years of preservation work seems like a long ways away, it is a refreshing glimpse at what we can accomplish and how much a nonprofit group can benefit society.  So even though we fledglings cannot afford to attend such a gala, it is important to remember that a) this gala is attracting a different clientele and showcasing the preservation world, which the field needs, and b) this is what we can strive to accomplish, whether it means winning an award for a project, inspiring the project that wins the award, hosting a ceremony to honor preservation colleagues, or building a similar strong organization.  

As far as I know, most of the readers of Preservation in Pink are located on the east coast or at least in the eastern half of the United States.  Connecting the east and west coasts (and middle America) is a huge step that we preservationists need to take in order to unify our goals and standards.  An article in the December 2008 issue of Preservation in Pink will feature some of the award winners and more about the ceremony.  To see the press release, click this link for a word document: california-preservation-foundation-25th-annual-awards.