Projects show how historic preservation strengthens economies, promotes New York's rich culture
The New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation announced seven outstanding projects and individuals from around state received 2018 New York State Historic Preservation Awards to honor excellence in the protection and rejuvenation of New York's historic landmarks. Commissioner Rose Harvey presented the awards at a ceremony Thursday at the State Museum in Albany.
"Across New York, communities, businesses and individuals are embracing historic preservation strategies to promote community renewal, cultural enrichment and job growth in New York," Harvey said. "I congratulate this year's recipients on their great work that both preserves the distinctive history our communities and helps create a better future for our state."
Established in 1980, the state preservation awards are given by State Parks' Division for Historic Preservation each year to honor excellence in the protection and rejuvenation of New York's historic and cultural resources. Awards honor the efforts and achievement of individuals, organizations and municipalities that make significant contributions to the state's historic preservation objectives. This year's awards were presented at a ceremony held at the New York State Museum in downtown Albany.
This year's award recipients include: Mark Thomas, former western district director, New York State Parks. From 2007 until his retirement this year, Thomas directed state parks in the 10 Western New York counties and oversaw the execution of Gov. Andrew Cuomo's "NY Parks 2020" initiative, which included more than a $125 million investment into Western Region state parks. Thomas' tenure included the $70 million restoration of Niagara Falls State Park - the nation's oldest state park - and the opening of the Humphrey Nature Center at Letchworth State Park
The Division for Historic Preservation helps communities identify, evaluate, preserve and revitalize their historic, archeological and cultural resources. It works with governments, the public, and educational and not-for-profit organizations to raise historic preservation awareness, to instill in New Yorkers a sense of pride in the state's unique history, and to encourage heritage tourism and community revitalization.