Askins Achievement Award
wood planes

The Askins Achievement Award

David R. Mertz - 2014 Askins Achievement Award Recipient

A highlight of IPTW 2014 was the presentation of the 2014 Askins Achievement Award to David R. Mertz, Professor and Chair of the Building Preservation/Restoration Program at Belmont College. The nomination, submitted by Simeon Warren, Dean Emeritus of the American College of the Building Arts states, "I nominate David R. Mertz for the Askins Achievement Award not only in recognition of his great achievement in sustaining an exceptional academic program for over 25 years in the United States, but also in my humble opinion perhaps, he is the most influential figure in trade education this side of the Atlantic. Every academic professor who has built a program in these United States has referenced this man and his work. Which means that every student who has been through an academic trade education program has been influenced by this man."

Submit a Nomination for the 2015 Askins Achievement Award
Nominations for the 2014 Askins Achievement Award are now being accepted, and may be submitted until May 1, 2015. You do not have to be a member of PTN to make a nomination for the Askins Achievement Award. Nominations from previous years may be resubmitted, and are encouraged. The 2014 Askins Achievement award will be presented at IPTW 2014, in September at Belmont Tech in St.Clairsville, Ohio.

Download nomination form Download the Askins Award Guidelines and Nomination form.

Guidelines and Nomination Procedure for the Askins Achievement Award
  1. Askins Achievement Award recipients do not have to be members of Preservation Trades Network.
  2. Nominators for the Askins Achievement Award do not have to be members of the Preservation Trades Network and they do not have to be Award Recipients.
  3. Recipients of the Askins Achievement Award are the group that administers the award, and selects future recipients.
  4. The award was established to be distinct from and separate from the Preservation Trades Network Board of Directors.
  5. The permanent award plaque listing previous winners is owned by the National Park Service Historic Preservation Training Center and shall be displayed and kept up-to-date by the HPTC at the HPTC Headquarters at Gambrill House, Frederick, MD.  The Logo is loaned to PTN for use on the individual Award Plaque given to each year’s winner.
  6. A recipient selected by the others shall take on the administration of the award on behalf of the Askins Achievement Award group.
  7. The new recipient shall be contacted to ensure that the plaque is created in the manner desired by the recipient.
  8. The criteria for the Askins Achievement Award are stated in the nomination form.
  9. The Askins Achievement Award group shall solicit nominations from the Preservation Trades Community at large. 
  10. The Askins Achievement Award group shall have the right by majority vote to approve or disapprove use of the Award for marketing or promotion by the Preservation Trades Network Board of Directors.
  11. The Askins Award Recipient shall have a nominator who has provided a written nomination form and is willing to introduce the recipient.
  12. Announcement of the Askins Award Recipient shall be published in the PTNews or other media after the International Preservation Trades Workshop. 
  13. Announcement of the Askins Award Recipient before the International Preservation Trades Workshop is subject to a majority vote of the recipients.
  14. The business of the Askins Achievement Award group may be conducted by conference call, direct meeting, or email.  A quorum to conduct the business of the group shall be a majority of the recipients..
  15. Nominations stand for one year.  The nomination may re-submitted.

2010 Askins Award group shot

Askins Achievement Award Recipients

2014 - David R. Mertz
2013 - Duffy Hoffman
2012 - Simeon Warren
2011 - Dominic DeRubis
2010 - Neil Rippingale
2009 - Robert Adam
2008 - David Gibney
2007 - Dr. Gerard C.J. Lynch
2006 - Earl Barthé
2005 - Joseph Jenkins
2004 - John William Laing
2003 - Jimmy Price
2002 - Bill Gichner
2001 - Lisa Sasser
2000 - Rudy R. Christian
1999 - John Fugelso
1998 - James S. (Jim) Askins

Askins Achievement Award presentation at IPTW 2013, Frederick, MD. Left to right; Rudy R. Christian (AAA 2000), David Gibney (AAA 2008), Duffy Hoffman (AAA 2013), Lisa Sasser (AAA 2001) and Neil Rippingale (AAA 2010)..

Duffy Hoffman - 2013 Askins Achievement Award Recipient

Nomination Statement by David Gibney:
Duffy Hoffman has been a loyal and active member of PTN since its inception. PTN’s original goals clearly went straight to Duffy’s heart.While already owning a successful painting business, Duffy shifted to learning correct historic painting techniques and methods for restoring finishes on historic structures. His business and all of his teaching activities have centered on that ever since. He is a passionate advocate, sometimes maybe too passionate, but his energy is unbounded.

His goal in life is clearly to promote the historic trades by using his expertise in painting and other restoration skills to educate anyone who is interested in learning, and even those who aren’t!

He is constantly thinking about how he can involve and inspire people, especially young people, to learn about the importance of restoring historic structures correctly. He has been a constant voice, and a loud one, at PTN events for including the youth. He has spent many months trying to start internship and education programs, especially for underprivileged youth or youth who need an occupation. In Elkins, WV he was involved in the Riverside School Project Youth Empowered Solutions to use an empty building to start a job education program for the youth of the area with historic restoration techniques as part of the curriculum. It is still there and he and I will be teaching workshops there this summer.

Duffy has taught myriad workshops, many at no charge. He has produced a video illustrating correct painting restoration techniques. He makes himself available whenever he is needed to reach and teach homeowners, groups and especially young people how to treat historic structures and how important it is to save them. He has appeared on HGTV’s Restore America and in Old House Journal and Fine Homebuilding. Duffy is a mile a minute talker and can be very forceful in expressing his opinions, but no one can doubt his dedication to the historic trades and the educational goals of PTN. Even when he had a serious stroke, he came back, refusing to let his physical weakness stop his mental insistence on promoting PTN’s goals.

I can personally attest to the fact that Duffy is literally thinking (and talking!) about how he can help youth and PTN from the moment he wakes up every day. It is clearly his main goal in life. I have also been involved in PTN since its inception and I have watched all of the leading characters through the years. We are a group of skilled and opinionated artisans and PTN has gone through many changes and regroupings, but Duffy is one of the strong old guys who started and then stayed with PTN and he deserves to be awarded the Askins Award for his constant faith and attention to the goals of PTN.

Simeon Warren - 2012 Askins Achievement Award Recipient

Simeon Warren (AAA 2012)Nomination Statement by Lisa Sasser:
It is my great honor and privilege to nominate Simeon Warren, Dean of the College and Professor of Architectural Stone Carving at the American College of the Building Arts for the 2012 Askins Achievement Award. It is difficult to imagine a single individual who more fully embodies the values and the attributes that the Askins award represents, or who has dedicated himself more fully to “the continuance of traditional building skills, advocacy of training in preservation trades, practicing a building trade at master level of skill and knowledge, and extraordinary effort given to advancing the awareness of traditional building trade skills and knowledge.”

As a stone carver he learned his trade at Weymouth College, gaining an Advanced Craft Certificate in Masonry from the City and Guilds of London Institute. His first professional position was as an apprentice at Lincoln Cathedral, later becoming Deputy Yard Foreman at Wells Cathedral, where he worked on the central tower. He has also produced stone for a number of historic buildings including Buckingham Palace and The Houses of Parliament. At Glasgow School of Art he received a Fine Arts Degree in Environmental Art, which allowed him to create more contemporary conceptual work.

Simeon has served on the Board of Directors of both the Association for Preservation Technology and the Preservation Trades Network, and was instrumental in working with both organizations to advance collaboration and dialog through parallel annual conferences. That the conferences theme, “Cornerstones: New Foundations in Preservation” should spring from the inspiration of a stone carver is a testament to Simeon’s vision for a future in which the trades have a respected and valued role in the conservation of built heritage and the making of beautiful, useful and durable buildings.

Simeon has played a pivotal role in the development of the American College of the Building through its formative years as the School of the Building Arts, through the graduation of its first four year college graduates in 2009, and pursuing accreditation. He has worked tirelessly, frequently in the face of immense obstacles and difficulties, to ensure the future success and sustainability of the ACBA program, and to inspire and support its students and graduates.

One graduate Mimi Moore, a stone carver had the following to say about Simeon’s influence:

    “From the first introduction at my first open house, to each one after Simeon Warren has been the most humble and unassuming man but his peers always have the highest praise for him.
    In everyday life Simeon is very even keeled but when he gets to talking about and working with stone he becomes extremely passionate and it is impossible not to share his enthusiasm.

    He enjoys the small secret nuances’ in stone carving. I remember when he first showed us how to find a flat surface in a rough-faced stone. It seemed impossible and insurmountable. But he took us slowly through each step, carving a small flat in each corner before putting four small pieces of perfectly square iron on each flattened corner, then quietly revealing how, using two straight edges, to “see” the flat surface and where to carve it. Because of how he taught and the pleasure he showed in teaching, I will never forget how to find a flat surface. That is just one of many other invaluable things, which I have learned for Mr. Simeon and will never forget.

    Simeon’s passion for the trade and for preservation did not stop at the class room. He was always willing to give advice and to counsel us. It did not matter what we needed help with, he is the rock for the school and for many people in it.

    He always had some new idea or outside project to incorporate in class. They ranged from trips to conferences and going to New Orleans where we repaired hurricane damage, to collaborating with multiple schools on many projects. I am always amazed by what he could accomplish. We all learned so much from him and in learning from him you could not help but have a deep respect for him.”

These comments are representative of so many that I’ve heard from students, graduates and colleagues.

Simeon represents a rare combination of qualities – a visionary and artist with a long view of the role and the value of the trades – and a pragmatic and immensely focused determination to doing the hard work and consensus building required to help bring about a bright future for the trades. I believe that Simeon, both by his own personal example and by the visibility and credibility he has brought to the trades through his work has immeasurably advanced the understanding, appreciation and respect for people who work with their hands, minds and hearts.

2011 - Dominic DeRubis

Dominic DeRubis - AAA 2011Nomination statement by Chris Robinson, Deputy Superintendent, National Park Service Historic Preservation Training Center
The nomination of Dominic “Dom” DeRubis for the 2011 Askins Achievement Award is intended to recognize a talented, articulate, passionate, and dedicated preservation Master Mason. Mr. Derubis’ skill and craftsmanship as has been demonstrated by his work on hundreds of National Historical Landmark and National Register historic structures throughout the USA. The qualities that perhaps best qualify Dominic as a candidate for the Askins Achievement Award are those that make him a Master; his tremendous talent with stone, brick, and mortar, his patience, his knowledge of historic masonry techniques and materials, his humor, and perhaps most importantly the communications skill to pass his trade skill and knowledge to others. Dominic DeRubis is uncompromising and demanding of his own work and when when it comes to masonry training; he expects the best out of his students and has the ability to inspire mastery of the trade; those are the very qualities that make him a Master.

Dom entered the masonry trade as a young boy. At an early age, Dom joined the union and completed an apprenticeship program while working with the family masonry firm in central Pennsylvania. For the better part of the next 30 years Dom remained employed as a mason in the private sector. During this career, Dom developed a broad range of masonry skills of which many would consider to be at the master level. In 1989, Dom became employed with the National Park Service’s with what was then called the Williamsport Preservation Training Center and is today known as the Historic Preservation Training Center (HPTC). Dom’s role then, as it is currently, was to serve as the Lead Mason on preservation projects and the Lead Masonry Instructor for the organization. Since that time Dom has further improved his skills and knowledge, as they pertain to the preservation of historic masonry structures, becoming one of the most experienced and knowledgeable preservation masons within the National Park Service. Dom has always been a major advocate for the training of those responsible for the maintenance and repair of our national treasures. His personal experience with an apprenticeship and his understanding of the value of formal training for the development of trade skills has been something that Dom has always supported and promoted.

One of Dom’s major roles with the HPTC is to instruct, mentor, and guide those responsible for the care and stewardship of our cultural resources. During his tenure with the HPTC Dom has taught literally hundreds of employees of the National Park Service and its partners reaching people from Alaska and Hawaii to Florida and Maine. This training in traditional masonry trade skills has been provided to course participants of all masonry skill levels during both formal and informal training sessions. A very high percentage of the training has been accomplished through “hands-on” demonstrations and participation. Curriculum for these sessions has addressed every aspect of masonry from basic raking and repointing of masonry to material selection and preparation, stone cutting and carving, rendering, and the reassembly of complex structures. Dom’s skills and knowledge have been exhibited on a continuing basis during these training sessions. Dom’s personality and obvious desire to teach others is perhaps one of his strongest attributes making him one of the most sought after instructors within the National Park Service. His ability and desire to train others is exemplary. He is very well respected and is held in high regard by his co-workers and HPTC’s clients. In order to accomplish all that he has in his career, Dom has had to make many personal sacrifices. He has spent much of his time away from home while serving the organization. In addition to Dom’s employment with the National Park Service he has also served as a masonry instructor at Admiral Perry Area Vocational-Technical School in Ebensburg, PA. This role has allowed Dom to share his skills with young individuals entering the masonry trade.

As the Lead Mason at the National Park Service Historic Preservation Training Center (HPTC) Mr. DeRubis has had the opportunity to dedicate a great deal of his career to the hands-on training of maintenance employees and trades people both within and outside the National Park Service. Hundreds of preservation mechanics have benefited as a direct result of attending a workshop or participating in a preservation project where Dominic DeRubis has served as an instructor or as the Lead Mason. Dom’s master level masonry skills have been sought out and applied to the preservation of some of America’s great historic structures to include the Lincoln and Jefferson Memorials, the White House, Fort Jefferson, Castillo De San Marcos, and various canals, bridges, and monuments. The effect of scores of individuals that have learned the art of masonry preservation by working alongside Dom must be measured by the improved condition of many of this nation’s most treasured landmarks, and it is for these lifetime achievements that Dominic DeRubis is nominated for the 2011 Askins Achievement Award.

Note: Mr. DeRubis retired from the National Park Service in December 2010, but continues to share his knowledge and skills as an instructor at HPTC workshops and training programs.

2010 - Neil Rippingale
Neil Rippingale - AAA 2010Nomination statement by Nick Aitken, Woodbine, 127 High Street, Kingussie, Inverness-shire, Scotland
I wish to propose Neil Rippingale, Training Program Manager with the Dry Stone Conservancy in Lexington, Kentucky for the 2010 Askins Achievement Award because of his personal achievements, contributions to training and enthusiasm in increasing the awareness of drystone technology. His career represents a progression in an ancient craft. A cumulative benefit to the craft, to many individuals and to many sites and organisations round the world.  

Neil comes from a family of farm servants with an outstanding work ethic.   He was top student in his class at agricultural college for three years running, 1976 – 78.   There would be no opportunity to own a farm; the family lacked the capital and the connections but while working on the farm he had the benefit of early exposure to drystone walling and the opportunity to be trained by one of the Scottish legends in the craft – Charlie Jardine. Neil joined the Dry Stone Walling Association of Great Britain (DSWA) in 1989 and within a year worked his way through their four-stage craftsman certification scheme and emerged as a Master Craftsman and qualified instructor. For a while Neil worked on the farm, with evenings at walling.  He learned the realities of being self employed - cash flow, estimation, office work, tax etc etc.  Soon he had the confidence to go full time and formed his own company. Neil trained and certified local drystone wallers while in the Edinburgh area, some became competitors but Neil accepted that and took every chance to expand his skills by moving on to special individual projects. 

In 1993 Neil and a small team built the first Blackhouse (a single storey drystone house with a thatched roof) since the 19th Century on the Isle of Harris in the Scottish Hebrides.   This was his first chance to work with a client who was also an engineer.  Neil’s practical input was essential to realise the engineer’s dream. Plans had to be followed and the design had to allow for modern safety standards.  The client and the builder worked well together to create a unique house, which won the first Dry Stone Walling Association Pinnacle Award.  The Pinnacle Award recognises projects incorporating   the very best of drystone craftsmanship, innovative use of design and inspirational use of stone.  Only the very best craftsmanship can win this award.

Neil’s reputation spread up and down the Scottish Islands, he was employed by the Agricultural Training Board to train drystone wallers in the widespread Scottish Hebridean islands.    Students found Neil an able and entertaining teacher, some started their own stone-based businesses as an important component of their income stream, in a place where life is hard and often has to be based on natural materials and sustainability. Neil took the opportunity to learn Scots Gaelic, he never had more than a few sentences but the islanders appreciated the effort. The DSWA had a series of walling competitions in the 1990’s – the DSWA Grand Prix Circuit.   Neil took part in these, won a few prizes, and learned a lot from the different stone types on the circuit and from fellow competitors.  His skills were recognised, and he was asked to judge some of the competitions.

In 1997 Neil and David Sinclair found themselves working for Andy Goldsworthy (the landscape artist) for 5 weeks at the Cirque de Soleil headquarters in Montreal Canada.  The installation was a 165 metre long curved wall which also served as seating.  The temperatures were sometimes low but the need for accuracy was always high.  There was no more than a 10mm drop in height over the full length.  The work demanded focus and commitment, 35 days at 14 hours per day.  The structure included 1282 hand cut copestones.

Neil returned to his business in Edinburgh but the next overseas opportunity was not long in coming  – Switzerland for a retaining wall.  Neil took the opportunity to introduce a training scheme and get 12 Swiss wallers through the first stage of the DSWA certification.  Some of the Swiss wallers later came to Scotland and advanced their certification while helping complete a local project, a new burial ground wall built with stone from ruined cottages.

A young Australian introduced Neil to a project near Melbourne, Australia.  He designed and built what is now the tallest drystone structure in Australia - 150 metres long and 6 metres high.  Typically Neil shared his skills and trained local wallers who are still building structures on the site.  The client knew what he wanted, - ‘’an architectural statement’’, but Neil had to provide the drystone experience and prove to the local planners and engineers that drystone could be built to such a scale. Drystone wallers may have a unique way of looking at the world. On the way to Australia Neil was asked to look at a site in Bali, Indonesia. He dismissed this island paradise as unsuitable for a drystone walling because the stone was no good, it was friable lava, which had to be mortared.

The next venture abroad was to Nova Scotia, Canada, where Neil, partnered by David Goulder, built a wall designed by an architect in Bristol, England.  This gave the team experience in dealing with constant specification changes by a firm of architects working in a different time zone. In February / March 2001 I worked with Neil on the first Scottish style drystone wall near Seattle, Washington.  The locals were intrigued by this unusual style of construction and even more amazed when the wall survived a substantial earth tremor.  It was quite a sight to watch the earth ripple, the wall moved up and down and settled without dislodging a single stone. We were building a property boundary but Neil’s approachable manner helped make the wall a meeting place for locals to learn more about an unusual construction method they had never seen before.  The wall was not dividing properties, it brought people together.

Luck has been described as preparedness meeting opportunity. Neil’s career and his contribution to drystone walling blossomed in 2001 when he was asked to assist the Dry Stone Conservancy of Lexington Kentucky with a consultation on the Chesapeake & Ohio Canal in Washington DC.  Neil joined the staff of the Dry Stone Conservancy (DSC) to assist in the furtherance of their mission to preserve, revive and promote the use of drystone in Kentucky.   Many of the limestone walls of Kentucky were originally built by Scots and Irish in the 19th Century.  It is therefore fitting that a Scot should help DSC achieve its mission. Neil is employed as Training Program Manager with DSC.  He has helped develop a series of workshops, which are continually improving and diversifying - based on the students’ comments on an end-of-workshop questionnaire.  Specialised workshops can be arranged for any employer or agency with drystone on their property.  The latest development is simulcast training, whereby cameras and satellite technology link a tutor and students, often miles apart. Hundreds of people, in half the states in the US, have been trained by Neil and his team.  Most will not go for certification but will remember Neil’s laminated list of four basic principles and five golden rules for drystone building. 

One very important aspect of Neil’s job was to help develop the DSC’s Certification Scheme, a graded progression from Basic Mason to Master Craftsman.  This was initially based on the DSWA scheme but was adapted to suite the needs of the Kentucky walling styles and the need to produce skilled masons who could run their own businesses.  Kentucky now has 3 Master Craftsmen, 4 Journeyman Masons and has passed around 50 drystone masons at the basic level.  They come from as far away as Oregon and Estonia in Europe. Through Neil’s connections with the DSWA he managed to get 8 masons certified as instructors.  DSC is now self sufficient in a variety of skills from training to consultancy and able to fully justify its place as a one-stop source for drystone walling in the US.The National Park Service and other agencies, including the Kentucky Heritage Council, have acknowledged the importance of the skill of Neil and his team in restoring and preserving some of America’s most treasured places.  Some of these were Civil War battlefield sites where it was important to replicate the old styles of walling to preserve the historic accuracy. DSC projects have varied from reconstruction of culverts, bridge abutments and house foundations to tricky retaining walls in very confined sites. Neil’s skill with machinery and an ability to think on his feet and use initiative is most useful when presented with awkward sites, difficult access situations or safety issues. This contributes to the efficiency of the projects, keeps costs down and quality high. Neil is part of the DSC team who have been consulted on many drystone restoration projects.  Neil provided the practical skill and understanding of an ancient craft, which could have been dismissed by the modern engineer.  His enthusiasm and ‘can-do’ attitude have inspired many engineers and planners. Another important aspect of the DSC work is projects which combine training with local improvements or repairs, thus preserving the built heritage and providing skill training. Neil started the annual DSC walling competition in 2004.  It helped bring drystone to the attention of the public and no doubt helped influence the recent state legislation to protect the iconic walls in Kentucky. Neil is a familiar face at demonstrations of the craft at many locations, including PTN events.  His management of the DSC sponsored drystone bridge at St Clairsville, Ohio, in 2005 was a highlight of the event.

His ability to inspire, willingness to learn and passion for drystone deserves recognition.  His combinations of skills, gained from an agricultural background and worldwide experience makes him probably the most qualified drystone project manager in the US, possibly in the world.

2009 - Robert Adam
Robert Adam - AAA 2009 Nomination statement by Miguel Gómez-Ibáñez, Executive Director, North Bennet Street School
Robert Adam has been a tireless advocate for thorough skills training in traditional building trades for more than thirty years, and the Askins Achievement Award would be a fitting recognition of his contribution to the preservation and promotion of traditional trade skills and practices. Not only has Mr. Adam been directly involved in training many preservation carpenters, but his classes have worked throughout the eastern New England region, providing a service to many house museums and historic sites hampered by meager budgets but responsible for saving our architectural heritage.

Mr. Adam is the principal architect of the most successful full-time preservation skills training program in the country. In 1982, he was hired to work as a carpentry instructor at North Bennet Street School to teach contemporary construction methods and subsequently became head of the department. However, while in that position, he proposed that the school offer preservation training that would be unique in the field: a curriculum-based training program to teach comprehensive traditional carpentry skills in the classroom and shop and on projects chosen to teach and reinforce those skills. Instead of a single site, Mr. Adam foresaw the opportunity to work on historic sites throughout New England and the Northeast. Since its beginning in 1986, the Preservation Carpentry program has graduated more than 200 students who enter the field with manual skills, hands-on experience and analytical abilities. He follows the graduates’ careers, often advising on site-work problems, and is proud to find many of them are now his colleagues in the field. In addition to woodworking skills, Mr. Adam has included painting, plaster, masonry and metal work training whenever possible, as an encouragement to his students to continue to learn skills beyond those of the carpenter.

His resourceful direction and problem-solving made possible the operation of the program in limited quarters for many years, working on-site or in borrowed space when projects required it. Over ten years and while involved in other projects, Preservation Carpentry students substantially restored Shaw House, a building owned by the school and serving as the program bench space: repaired and restored structural elements, preserved and replicated millwork, repointed masonry, preserved original plaster and completed three-coat plaster in the first two floors.

Mr. Adam has worked tirelessly to raise the standards for his own work as well as that of his students. He has pursued his own continued professional development in the field, attending workshops and seminars given by the Preservation Trades Network, the Vernacular Architecture Forum and APT. Over the last twenty five years he has taught and participated in many trade workshops at Eastfield Village. He was chosen in 1998 as an Attingham Scholar, attending their annual tour program of Country Houses in England. In 2002 he was one of the first chosen as a Quinque Fellow and spent eleven weeks in Scotland in a cooperative sharing of historic preservation practices with professionals from Historic Scotland and others throughout the country. Setting a high standard of community involvement for his students and his field, Mr. Adam has served as a volunteer and consultant on many projects throughout New England. He has served as a member of his Historic Commission in the town of Shirley, Massachusetts for thirty years, volunteered on many town boards, and serves as a board member for several historical societies and museums. As a longtime member of the advisory panel for the Restoration/Renovation Exposition (now Traditional Building) he has advised on trade training, leading a number of panel discussions with other professionals from around the US. Mr. Adam also speaks on preservation issues at various forums. Most recently, he has spoken to Massachusetts Barn Preservation Task Force and has been a featured speaker several times in Craft in Context, a joint program between Historic New England (then SPNEA) and the school, pairing him as a craftsman with an architectural curator. In short, Robert Adam represents in every way the qualities, accomplishments and dedication that is envisioned for the recipient of the Askins Achievement Award.

2008 - David Gibney
2008 Askins Award - David GibneyNomination statement by J. Michael Logan, Supervisor of Heritage Conservation, Howard County Recreation and Parks Department
Born and raised in South Bend, Indiana, David began his career in 1971 working a construction job while an art student at Indiana University. He bought his first old house in 1976 in South bend, which led to purchasing a number of houses, thus forming the Old Building Recycling Company in 1977, restoring old houses in South Bend's Historic district. During this time he served on the Board of Renew, Inc. one of the first non-profits of its kind to assist inner city residents to buy and restore their homes. Furthering his life goal he joined the National Trust's Restoration Workshop Study Program from 1980-82. He was instrumental in assisting with projects at Lyndhurst Estate, NY, Woodrow House and the Decatur House in Washington DC, Chesterwood, Clivden, and the famed Drayton Hall in South Carolina.

In 1983 he ended up back in South Bend to serve as Project Manager for Neighborhood Housing Services, restoring inner city houses. I imagine that with his experience with the National Trust's east coast properties and wanting to be where history happened first, prompted his move to Maryland in 1984, where he began working for Doug Reed of Preservation Associates, Inc. He figured he could make a living out of working and teaching the preservation trades. So in 1988 he formed Historic Restoration Specialists, Inc. His ad states “preservation specialists and fine artisans” and he has honorably lived up to those labels. To the present time, his company continues to establish itself with a wide variety of quality restoration trade projects throughout Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia and West Virginia. His clients include private individuals, historic societies, the National Park service, churches, state and local municipalities. While known for specialized carpentry in restoration of windows and doors, he is accomplished in masonry, plaster, decorative plaster and timber framing.

With his professional training in art and preservation skills, he is not only blessed with the ability to restore almost any type of object in our built environment, but has a need to share with others his knowledge. He has evolved as a known teacher/trainer of the preservation trades. His professional lecture and teaching experience includes: seminar Instructor in masonry, plaster, preservation carpentry, preservation methods, window and porch repair, comprehensive restoration methods, and Early American Building lecture series at Harford, Frederick, Allegany Community Colleges in Maryland, American College of the Building Arts, Wilson College, Shepherd College, , University of Pennsylvania, Virginia Community College, and the Smithsonian Institute. He has lectured and taught on many occasions with hands-on workshops at Historical Societies and preservation group throughout Maryland and Virginia, often without compensation.

He has become a self-taught man that craves knowledge of our trades, with the ability and desire to share that knowledge. I know, I have witnessed this on many occasions. With over 200 books in his library, 90% of them are art and restoration manuals. He has associated himself with people in the know to become one of the persons "in the know".  His heart and mind are continuously giving 100% to teach, demonstrate and work hard for the people who want to learn. He is inspired by three major projects: the Preservation Trades Network, Habitat for Humanity and helping the people of New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina.

He has been involved with PTN since its birth, always improving his demos, always staying late, and answering the final question. David is a voice of experience and passion for his work, with an answer worthy of any ear. As a member of the PTN Board of Directors twice over, he is an advocate for PTN where ever he travels.  He has volunteered with the Hagerstown, MD chapter of Habitat for Humanity since its inception in the early 1990's. He served as Project Manager for the first 12 houses built; often teaching volunteers tool-trade skills. In the fall of 2006-07 he taught a group of women the skills to complete the first Woman's Built house.

He recently completed his fourth trip to New Orleans, since Katrina. He was the driving force that made the production and training happen at IPTW 2006. In May of 2007 he funded himself and three volunteers to work in New Orleans, training homeowners in restoration methods, and skills for selecting qualified contractors. Recently this past March he spent a week training Hands On, Inc. volunteering on window restoration projects. He has a heart-felt desire to help the people of New Orleans regain their life and dignity. I know this, because that is what he is all about.

In closing this nomination, I can honestly say in the past twenty years I have known him, he has given me sound advice on every question I have ask him and always gave me a correct procedure to a preservation trade question. For the past 10 years we have become good friends and I can honorably say that I have never known a more gracious humanitarian, in all aspects of his life, than David Gibney. He has raised the bar and challenged others to the task. His ethics in practicing his craft are at a master skill level, promoting him as a driving force in moving the preservation trades forward. I'm proud to nominate him for this honor and to be his friend. Thank you David Gibney.

2007 - Dr. Gerard C.J. Lynch
Dr. Gerard C.J. Lynch Nomination statement by John Laing AAA, IMBM, Cert Ed, FWCP
Gerard is an internationally acclaimed and highly respected historic brickwork consultant, master bricklayer, educator and author. Gerard left school with little or no qualifications but had the natural ability and determination to complete an apprenticeship to become a skilled Brickmason. After completing his five year apprenticeship and working in the industry, Gerard went on to first teach and then managed Trowel Trades at Bedford Technical College in England. This would have been enough for most master craftsperson but Gerard went on to gained many awards, including the Silver and Gold Trowels from the Brick Development as well as gaining his Licentiate of the City in Brickwork. During his time training and teaching apprentices, Gerard pioneered the revival of gauged brickwork, in which he is know considered to be one of the world's leading authority. Becoming disillusioned in the early 1990’s due mainly to the break up of the craft by the modern construction industry awards body, Gerard took the decision to set up a private consultancy and teaching practice in Historic Brickwork in 1992. Since that important date Gerard has gain world wide recognition as leading trainer and consultant in Historic brickwork Techniques. He continued his quest for life long learning by being awarded the 'Winston Churchill Travel Fellowship' to study in the Netherlands and Belgium and the Viscount De L'Isle Award for in 1997 and in 1999 he was awarded an MA in 'Conservation of Historic Brickwork by De Montfort University, Leicester, and was awarded a Doctorate in 'Historic Brickwork Technology'. Dr Gerard Lynch moved into wider international areas, working in Europe and in the USA, and working as a consultant on many historic structures and lately was involved in training and consultancy of the rebuilding of St Mary's Church, Historic St Mary's, Maryland, USA. ‘The Red Mason’ as Gerard is affectionately known in the US, has given lectures and demonstrations at the American Lime Conference, the International Preservation Trades Workshops' (IPTW) as well as key note speeches at many preservation conferences throughout the world. In closing, there are many honours’ that Gerard has won that I have not mentioned but I would be here all night, Gerard is well respected by his peers for never forgetting his craft back ground or where he came from and indeed can jaw at any level from Craft to Academic. Gerard has already made a substantial contribution towards the understanding, application, repair and conservation of historic brickwork, through his books and teachings.

2006 - Earl Barthé
Earl Barthe Nomination Statement by Marjorie A. Hunt, Ph.D. Curator/Folklorist Smithsonian Institution Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage
It is my great pleasure to nominate Earl Barthé for the Askins Achievement Award. Mr. Barthé is immensely deserving of this award. He is not only a master preservation plasterer of extraordinary skill and artistry, he is a craftsman who has great love for his traditional trade, takes great pride in high standards of excellence in craftsmanship, and has worked tirelessly to teach, preserve, and pass on his traditional skills to future generations of tradesmen. Earl Barthe’s roots in the plastering tradition run deep. He is a 5th generation plasterer whose great-great-grandfather, a master plasterer from Nice, France, settled in New Orleans in the mid-1800s and established a family business that is still in operation today. “Ninety-nine percent of my male family are plasterers,” says Mr. Barthé. His 150-year-old family company specializes in preserving old plaster walls, ornamental cornices, and other decorative details for historic buildings. “I look at these old buildings, and I know one of my ancestors was involved in building it. Now we’re working on restoring it, and it gives me such a strong feeling for how things continue,” he once commented. Earl Barthé takes enormous pride in the lasting mark his family has left on the city of New Orleans. “I take my grandchildren riding, and I say, ‘See that building? We did that.’ We’ve had a hand in a lot of places.” When I first met Mr. Barthé while conducting research for the Masters of the Building Arts program for the 2001 Smithsonian Folklife Festival, I was immediately struck not only by his artistic excellence, but by his passion for his craft and his pride in his traditional skills. “When I was a boy, my dream was to be like my father. I couldn’t wait to get a job with plaster,” he said. “You cannot do this work if you don’t appreciate it. It’s some precious work. It’s like a diamond, like a jewel, and it’s for you to preserve it.” Mr. Barthe’s teachers demanded high quality work. “They didn’t just want a plasterer, they wanted a master craftsman. And New Orleans, we produce some of the best.” Mr. Barthé has followed in his teachers’ footsteps - he holds the bar high and demands excellence from the apprentices he teaches and the journeymen who work with him. Mr. Barthé has a strong desire to preserve and pass on his traditional knowledge and skills -- striving to keep his craft alive. He has passed down his trade to countless members of his family, including his son Hurchail Barthe, his daughters Terry and Trudy Barthé, and many of his grandchildren, as well as to numerous young people in New Orleans. He is a highly respected member of his trade union, a past member of the state’s Apprentice Program, and has continued to work hard to try to revive the plasterer union’s apprenticeship program. When Mr. Barthé participated in the Masters of the Building Arts program at the 2001 Smithsonian Folklife Festival, his willingness to share his traditional knowledge with the public served to educate and inspire thousands of visitors to the Festival. I know that he has taken part in many similar presentations in New Orleans. Mr. Barthé has always worked tirelessly to seek ways to bring young people into the trade, instill pride in the craft, and encourage high standards of workmanship. In the wake of Hurricane Katrina’s devastating effects on New Orleans, Mr. Barthe’s resolve to teach and preserve his craft has increased ten-fold and his involvement in efforts to help restore New Orleans’ historic buildings and rich material legacy is truly inspirational. Mr. Barthé has received many honors for his high quality craftsmanship and his passionate dedication to preserving his trade. He was featured in the recent New Orleans Museum of Art exhibition titled “Raised to the Trade: Creole Building Arts in New Orleans” and in the Smithsonian Folklife Festival’s “Masters of the Building Arts” program in 2001. In 2003, he was inducted into the Louisiana AFL-CIO Labor Hall of Fame, and in 2005 Mr. Barthé received the nation’s highest honor in the traditional arts – the National Endowment for the Arts’ National Heritage Fellowship. Earl Barthé stands as a beacon - inspiring and teaching others through his artistic mastery, his dedication to his craft, and his unwavering commitment to excellence. It is with the highest possible regard that I nominate Earl Barthé for the Askins Achievement Award. (Mr. Barthé passed away on January 11, 2010.)
2005 - Joseph Jenkins
Joseph Jenkins Nomination statement by John William Laing, Assistant Head of School, Edinburgh's Telford College
Joseph Jenkins, Master Roofer Slater and Tiler has been involved in preservation roofing trades since 1968. Joe, a successful owner and director of a Slate and Tiling Restoration Company in North Western Pennsylvania has personally worked on thousands of slate and tiled roofing structures; some well over 100 years old. Joe is a true connoisseur of roofing skills and has studied and researched roofing structures from all over the world. Indeed I believe a holiday or break from work consists of Joe climbing a roof some where in the world, whether it be in Spain, Scotland or the USA to discuss with fellow roofers what techniques, tools and materials have been used. I first met Joe several years ago at the World International Roofing Federation Youth Championships, held at Edinburgh’s Telford College, where he was a spectator. Every since that meeting I have been an admirer of Joe’s skills and knowledge with my involvement with the IPTW over last six years. Over this time I have observed Joe presenting and demonstrating his slating and roofing skills , disseminating any underpinning knowledge, freely to all attendees present. As the author of the Slate Bible, Joe has shared his knowledge with all within the preservation industry, sending copies of the Slate Bible to several Building Schools and Preservation Colleges for student use, in Europe as well as the US. Joe constantly presents at trade shows and is ever present at the IPTW sharing his skills and knowledge with all who attend. In closing, the Askins Achievement Award is presented to a recipient, whose work and accomplishments have reached the highest realization of quality, availability and viability in a preservation trade. I for one think Joe Jenkins, Master Roofer and Preservation Educationist has achieved this status and think he would be an excellent recipient of this years 2005 award for his contribution to the preservation of roofing trades and his unselfish way he shares his knowledge and skills with tradespersons, Architects and students throughout the Europe and the US.
2004 - John William Laing
John Laing Nomination statement by Jeffrey Price, Virginia Lime Works
As an educator at Edinburgh’s Telford College, John Laing has dedicated his life to sustaining the trowel trades in Scotland, in particular, plasterwork. He has also played an important role in bringing the techniques of historic plasterwork to trades people, architects, and conservators in the United States. Mr. Laing was nominated for this award by the owners of Virginia Lime Works, James Price (2003 Askins award recipient), and his son Jeffrey. Their nomination statement reads in part: My father and I met John Laing 4 years ago on our first trip to Scotland to learn more about traditional plastering and the many other uses of lime. Close to our hotel was a beautiful stone church that was under restoration. The restoration for the most part was being performed by apprentices and student stone carvers/masons. We stopped in to discuss the project when they told us that they were students at Edinburgh’s Telford College. We popped over to Telford where we were looking for the masonry instructor but instead were met by John Laing, the head of the plastering department. John took the greater part of the day to show us American strangers, his workshops, the work that his students were doing, and to discuss education initiatives and trowel trades education. The hospitality and the openness of that discussion was something that was never forgotten. As a result of this meeting Mr. Laing came to Harrisburg, Pennsylvania to demonstrate flat wall and in-situ cornice plasterwork at IPTW 2000. He has been a demonstrator at two subsequent IPTW events at IPTW 2002 in Fairmont, West Virginia, and IPTW 2003 Columbia, Maryland. At each of these events he has shared, not just his mastery of his trade and passion for teaching, but also his dedication to the understanding and practice of heritage conservation and continuing commitment to education.
2003 - Jimmy Price
Jimmy Price Nomination statement by John Friedrichs, New Dimension Building
James Price is the founder of Price Masonry Contractors, Inc. and Virginia Lime Works. Jimmy has worked the masonry trade for 30 years in all aspects of the business. His interest in traditional building and historical restoration led him to become involved with the restoration of Popular Forest. His passion for the masonry trade and its traditions and the work at Popular Forest was a catalyst to experiment with the traditional methods making lime putty from oyster shell and quicklime in a traditional wood fired kiln. His work in bringing the traditions of the production and use of lime putty mortar has been a contribution of extraordinary value to the conservation of our common cultural heritage. His personal goal has been to make a significant impact on the next generation of the preservation trades through education of craftsmen, consultants, architects, engineers and other professionals involved in the conservation of historic masonry. His company conducts building with lime workshops 6 times a year. Jimmy sponsored and created the first annual American Lime conference. He has taught workshops for the National Park Service, Eastfield Village, Cooperstown, Association of Preservation Technology, and the University of North Carolina. He worked in Falmouth Jamaica to teach local craftsmen how to produce lime putty from local sources and how to use it. He is sponsoring several international tours to educate and create a better understanding of the traditions of the masonry trade by gaining insight to the European experiencing. VA lime works sponsored 10 students at the American Lime Forum and one of the 10 was sponsored to the international tour. His goal is to bring create a bond between the European and American masonry building traditions. Jimmy has been honored by: National Trust for Historic Preservation for work at Popular forest Blue Ridge Chapter of American Institute of Architects, Craftsman of the Year State of Virginia American Institute of Architects, Virginia State Society Honors Awards Maryland Historical Trust, Maryland Historical Trust Award Jimmy Price truly fits the description of Master Mason. He has full command of his trade through the continuation of the trade by education of others, the development of his trade by expanding the base of knowledge, continuing the traditions of the trade, and linking North American experience with its roots in Europe.
2002 - Bill Gichner
Bill Gichner Bill wasn't always a blacksmith. He was one of the sons of the owner and operator of Gichner Iron Works located just outside Washington, DC, and had no interest in his father's business. However, when he was about 16 and looking for work, he found that the iron business offered him a steady job and good pay. Bill had to work hard to learn all the things about smithing that his father and others thought he should know to become a master smith. The fact that he did become a master smith can be shown by two small but important points. First, a large portion of the iron work that you can still see today in the Georgetown area of Washington was designed and built by the Gichner Iron Works and installed by Bill, since he did a large portion of the outside work for the company. Second, Bill was considered — and was officially recognized by his peers as — one of the few master smiths in the United States. When Bill left the Gichner Iron Works, his blacksmithing did not stop. He settled in Ocean View, Delaware and opened a shop called Iron Age Antiques. Some say the antiques were just a front for what really went on at the shop. Bill established a blacksmith shop in the basement and began teaching blacksmithing and selling blacksmith equipment. Bill soon established himself as the man with high prices, but the man that could get what you needed when no one else had it. Throughout his career Bill Gichner worked tirelessly to advance the trade, or art, of blacksmithing by formally and informally teaching the subject everywhere he could. In his 9th decade of life, he had an apprentice working and learning in his basement shop. His informal teaching also never stopped. Bill picked people that he thought had the talent and the creative mind and the desire to become a good working smith or teacher, and informally coached and encouraged them. The organizations that Bill helped have become legendary. The Artist Blacksmith Association of North America (ABANA), has bestowed its highest award in recognition of the work Bill has done to further its cause. The Blacksmiths Guild of the Potomac and the Gulf Branch Nature Center agreed that if the nature center built a shop to meet in on the Center's grounds, the guild would provide demonstrations to educate the public about smithing. Bill arrived one day with anvils, forges, vices, hammers and whatever else he thought they would need to get started. The Mid Atlantic Smiths Association received so much help from Bill that they took on the task of hosting the annual Bill Gichner Hammer-in, since the attendance became too large for everyone to fit in the Iron Age Antiques shop. On the Eastern Shore of Maryland, the Furnace town guild has a teaching facility mostly equipped by Bill. The facility was dedicated as the Debbie Gichner Memorial Blacksmith shop in honor of Bill's daughter. The Blacksmith Guild of Central Maryland (BGCM) survived for years solely on the money from the equipment and material that Bill donated every year for their auction at their Blacksmiths' Days celebration. When BGCM entered into an agreement with the Carroll County Museum to establish a blacksmith school and Bill heard about it, he called and asked what was needed to start the school. Bill interrupted the list of needs and said, "Let’s put it this way, when are you coming to pick it up?" BGCM now has a school with eight forging stations and gives classes all year, winter and summer. Bill gave his entire Library collection to the National Ornamental Metal Museum. It took three trips in a large van to transport the library to the museum in Tennessee, and they are building a new wing on the museum in which a section will be set aside for the Gichner collection. This section will be available to the public so that both present and future students may benefit from the generosity of this master smith. Bill Gichner passed away on December 8, 2004.
2001 - Lisa Sasser
Lisa Sasser Lisa has worked in preservation since 1972, beginning as a Museum Technician at the Ranching Heritage Center in Lubbock, Texas. In 1977, she received a Bachelor of Architecture degree from Texas Tech University, completing as a thesis project, a Historic Structures Report and restoration plan for a post-1680 houserow at Tesuque Pueblo, New Mexico. From 1979-1984 she was employed as a Historical Architect on the Northeast Team of the Denver Service Center, the centralized planning and design office of the National Park Service. In 1984, she became the first woman to enter the National Park Service preservation trades training program at the Williamsport Preservation Training Center in Williamsport, Maryland. After completing the trades apprenticeship program, she remained on the Training Center staff as a Supervisory Preservation Specialist and Senior Historical Architect. In 1993, she became the Assistant Chief Historical Architect for the National Park Service in Washington, D.C. From 1996-2006, she worked as a Project Manager with the National Park Service, Northeast Region, Architectural Preservation Division, in Lowell, Massachusetts. She served on the staff of the Northeast Region Planning, Construction and Facility Maintenance Directorate until her retirement from the National Park Service in 2009. Project work has included; planning and project supervision for stabilization of hospital structures on the south side of Ellis Island, project management for the rehabilitation of the entry level of the Washington Monument, and work on dozens of 18th-20th century structures in National Parks in the Mid-Atlantic states and New England. She has also worked with the Forest Service in the Pacific Northwest to preserve CCC-era rustic log structures, and encourage the development of in-house preservation teams. Since 1987, she has helped to develop training programs, and instructed workshops in preservation philosophy and "hands on" preservation methods for federal agencies, universities, and state and local groups. Publications include the articles What Historical Architects Can Learn from the Preservation Trades – and Why They Should, New Paradigms for Preserving Old Buildings, and Setting Up a Preservation Workshop in the journal CRM.
2000 - Rudy R. Christian
Rudy R. Christian From the beginning of his involvement with timber framing, Rudy has been willing and eager to share his experience and knowledge with others through discussions, networking, classes, written articles and on-the-job training. In 1997, Rudy attended the first IPTW as a demonstrator/presenter. He was instrumental in coordinating other timber framers that participated in the first IPTW. Each year since then, he has been the main contact and coordinator of timber framers involved in the PTN event. Rudy was a member of the first Executive Committee of PTN and is currently Chairperson of the PTN Special Projects Committee. Rudy is working with the PTN Planning and Research Committee in an effort to develop cooperative venture between the Timber Framers Guild and PTN. One such effort is the Hay Barracks training course and demonstration that was included with IPTW-2000. Rudy Christian is an appropriate example of many things that PTN represents. PTN is concerned for the involvement of the three generations of a trade. Rudy showed respect for his teachers and worked hard to complete the tasks assigned by them. As he developed in his trade, he networked and shared information and techniques with others. Always looking to glean more of the knowledge that is embedded in existing structures, he respects and learns from others, both living and dead. Through his dedication, hard work and openness, he has become a master of his trade. Many people become less accessible as they accumulate advanced knowledge, experience and skill and as their services become more in demand. Rudy has maintained an openness and a commitment to community building that is exemplary within the PTN community.
1999 - John Fugelso
John Fugelso John ‘the Craftsman’ is an historian, a problem solver, and an educator. All throughout John’s professional career, he has in one way or another focused on history and historic preservation activities. His skills in these areas have developed, in part, within the programs of such organizations as the National Portrait Gallery, where he worked as a cabinet-maker’s helper, and the National Trust for Historic Preservation, where he worked as a restoration intern. John is driven to establish sensible, useable and practical solutions to problems involving the details, materials and fabrication of historic buildings. He will agree that he has spent at least the past 20 years in pursuit of a body of preservation trades professionals to develop, support and use such solutions. It is indeed people like John who have created the environment for the International Preservation Trades Network to succeed. During John’s process of pursuing a career in the preservation trades, he accumulated professional degrees in American History and Political Science from the University of Minnesota, and Historic Preservation from the George Washington University. His educational background has served to foster his never-ending goal of educating others. From the late 70's through the mid 80's, he developed and implemented a program in Preservation Carpentry and Historic Preservation at Durham Technical Community College in Durham, North Carolina. In 1991, John took a position with the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission as Historic Preservation Supervisor. John was originally hired to coordinate a preservation project training initiative utilizing the Pennsylvania Conservation Corps (PCC), which is a training program for 18- to 25-year-old youths administered by the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry. Within a few years, this program grew from one crew at one site to ten crews at ten sites. Today, in addition to coordinating project activities of the PCC crews, he manages the Preservation Construction Section within the Division of Architecture and Preservation and a staff of two Preservation Construction Specialists. This section works in teams with the Architecture Section to design and manage preservation construction projects, and also undertakes their own preservation construction projects utilizing their trade skills. John has given many demonstrations of his skills as a preservation tradesman in carpentry, wood-shingle roofing and decorative finishes at historic site events, APTI and IPTW. He consistently strives to share his knowledge and experiences with his broad base of professional colleagues, unskilled youth, and in general, with anyone who will listen. The respect he shows for others never fails to garner the personal respect he receives in return.
1998 - James S. (Jim) Askins
Jim Askins 10/6/2006Jim Askins completed formal apprenticeship programs in both carpentry and cabinetmaking, and is considered by many preservationists to be a leading expert on the technical aspects of construction, restoration and maintenance required for historic preservation. He began working for the National Park Service in the early 1960's at Harpers Ferry, Pea Ridge and Vicksburg doing historic preservation projects. The passage of the National Historic Preservation Act in 1966, brought attention to the shortage of skilled tradespeople to work on National Park Service cultural resources projects. Jim began training a team of preservation craftsmen at Harpers Ferry in 1967. Following severe damage in 1968, the preservation team worked as the C&O Canal restoration team, which formed the nucleus for the creation of the Williamsport Preservation Training Center in 1977. Jim Askins directed the WPTC Program from 1977 until his retirement in 1989. During that period WPTC grew from 8 to 35 employees and completed more than 200 National Park Service preservation projects throughout the United States. In a 1997 interview with Doug Hicks, HPTC Deputy Superintendent, Jim described the training philsophy of the Williamport Preservation Training Center by saying, "In order for someone to work independently in the federal sector and not screw up a resource they had to have a tremendous array of skills. You had to have craft skills, administrative skills, people skills, and you had to have academic skills - it was the marriage of these things that I had in mind. It was why I selected a cross section of people as trainees knowing that I would not have the fiscal resources to hire instructors. The participants would help expose the other participants to their strong suits. I mixed craftspeople with professional people with people who had administrative skills and people skills." Reflecting on his Park Service career, Jim said, "My greatest contribution was to show that what we were doing was destroying cultural resources under the guise of maintaining them. We made people understand that they needed to do business a different way. If I contributed anything to the NPS, it was that idea. That idea may not have been original to me, but through my visibility and the amount of noise and people I beat over the head, I raised the awareness level of the special needs of cultural resources." (The complete interview is available in the online archive of the CRM Journal, Vol. 20, No. 12, 1977.) Jim passed away on September 7, 2011.
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