PastForward Online 2020: Schedule

Access the Virtual Platform

The most up-to-date conference program is available online for conference registrants via the virtual platform. Registration is required for participation, including free events.

All times listed below are Eastern time. If you are in a different time zone, the virtual platform will also show your local time zone.

Download a printable Schedule At-A-Glance.

Last update to this page 10/26/2020

Registration is required for participation, including free events.


Tuesday, October 27


Events on Tuesday are free but registration is required. When registering, select the option for attending only one or more special sessions. Free events are also included in your registration when you register for the full conference.

11:30-11:45 AM ET — Zoom Training

Join this tutorial hosted by Kimberly Dailey to make sure you can zoom efficiently through this year's PastForward conference.

11:30 AM-4:30 PM ET — Building Main Street Resilience: Getting Ready for Climate Adaptation
(with a mid-session break)

As our nation faces millions of acres of forest fires that have burned communities to the ground and Gulf Coast communities face flooding and damage from multiple hurricanes, how is your downtown preparing for the next disaster? How is climate change affecting your community and what can you do about it? The National Main Street Center’s Main Street Community Disaster Preparedness and Resilience program present the second in a series of three national workshops, supported by the Emergency Supplemental Historic Preservation Fund, administered by the National Park Service. Hear from national experts in the planning, real estate, and disaster preparedness specialists in this one-day pre-conference workshop on Tuesday, October 27th in conjunction with the National Trust’s 2020 Preservation Forward Conference.

Thought leaders from the Urban Land Institute (ULI) and other national organizations will share their experience on disaster recovery and climate adaptation from communities across the country. Take a look back from ULI’s North Miami Technical Assistance Panel to learn about climate adaptation ideas regionally and how a commercial district is preparing for climate change today. Learn how a neighborhood commercial district in Miami’s Allapattah neighborhood is using the Main Street Approach to adapt to “climate gentrification.” How is that impacting small businesses along their corridor?

During the second half of the day, get some hand-on knowledge on disaster preparation. Hear from FEMA and the Oklahoma Non-Profit Center (invited) on available tools and best practices to plan for the next disaster. And finally, meet with your colleagues from across the country in an optional hand-on session to get started on your disaster preparedness plan [note: hands-on session registration will be sent separately].

11:45 AM-12:00 PM ET — Day One Welcome

Join chief preservation officer of the National Trust, Katherine Malone-France, for a daily welcome, logistical information, and preview of conference highlights for the day.

12:00-12:50 PM ET — Increasing Awareness: Indigenous History and Historic Preservation

Panelists will discuss efforts to preserve, examine, and better understand the centrality of Indigenous histories in the making of North American landscapes, institutions, and communities. Each panelist has extensive experiences working to reassess the hundreds and even thousands of years of history of their respective communities and/or institutions. The session will examine topics such as place-based experiential learning, Indigenous commemoration and memorialization, and language preservation.

1:00-1:50 PM ET — LGBTQIA and Preservation

Connect with fellow LGBTQ preservation professionals, volunteers, and allies interested in the preservation of LGBTQ historic sites to network, share resources, and discuss emerging issues.

2:00-2:50 PM ET — African Americans and Preservation: Out of Crisis, Opportunity

Join the AACHAF team for a facilitated conversation about the role of Black historical sites and organizations in creating a preservation movement through the lens of social justice and equity. How do we envision preservation at the forefront of this movement and how do we better leverage any goodwill and opportunities or deal with challenges? Connect with fellow preservation practitioners, volunteers and allies to network, share resources and discuss these emerging issues.

3:00-3:50 PM ET — The State of Latinx Historic Preservation in the U.S.

Roundtable participants will present case studies and current issues facing Latinx communities in the effort to preserve our history and important places. This year, we’ll look at examples from Chicago, New York City, and Los Angeles. Topics of discussion will include Latinx community outreach and engagement, the challenges of designating non-traditional property types associated with Latinx history, and the importance of telling our stories. Participants will be asked, what does the future of Latinx historic preservation look like, particularly in the light of the current pandemic and the uprising against racial injustice? Join us!

4:00-4:50 PM ET — Asian and Pacific Islander Americans + Historic Preservation: Challenges and Opportunities

Learn about current opportunities and challenges in preserving historic sites and cultural resources significant to Asian and Pacific Islander Americans (APIAs). Potential points of discussion may include advocacy, education, and capacity building strategies to support better representation of and by APIAs in the field of historic preservation. Join us to discuss ways to partner, support, and/or connect with Asian and Pacific Islander Americans in Historic Preservation (APIAHiP) and share your ideas or feedback on work that may be associated with APIAs. All are welcome to join the discussion as we also look to build stronger partnerships across diverse groups and interests.

5:00-6:00 PM ET — Women’s History Isn’t Just for Women: Sharing the Real Past with Everyone

Every one of us—women and men—has a role to play in identifying and elevating women’s stories to tell more truthful and equitable American story. Join social justice activist and history maker Leona Tate, NPS historian and author Heather Huyck, historic site director Ryan Spencer, and Where Women Made History campaign director Chris Morris for a thought-provoking discussion about bringing women’s history and women’s experiences to the forefront to expand our national narrative, increase the relevance of our work, and create safe spaces to have unsafe conversations.

6:00-7:00 PM ET — Networking Event with Diversity Scholars and Mentors

Join us in welcoming this year's Diversity Scholars and their mentors to PastForward Online 2020. With National Trust Advisors, conference attendees are invited to share their own perspectives on the day's affinity meetings. Hear what the scholars and mentors hope to experience during the conference while making new acquaintances and renewing old friendships.

7:00-9:00 PM ET — Preservation Action Auction

Join All in for Advocacy: Preservation Action Foundation’s Virtual Event and Fundraiser as we commit to being all in for our built, cultural, and environmental heritage – no matter the circumstances. The hour long event will include compelling preservation stories, cameo appearances of preservation celebrities, and an opportunity for attendees to purchase a wonderful array of one of a kind preservation tours and experiences, educational opportunities, and unique gift items at our live online auction. Find out more and purchase tickets at: https://preservationaction.org/2020actionplan/auction/.


Wednesday, October 28


Darren Walker (Ford Foundation) / Sherrilyn Ifill (NAACP)

11:45 AM-12:50 PM ET — Opening Plenary
A Conversation About Philanthropy and Preservation as Justice

To kick off this year’s conference, join us for a conversation between Darren Walker, president of the Ford Foundation and Sherrilyn Ifill, president and director-counsel of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. Hear these two advisors to the African American Cultural Heritage Action Fund discuss the necessary reckoning that America must have with its racist past and how preservation plays a critical role in acknowledging and healing the divisions in our nation.

The horrific killings of African Americans by police have shaken the nation to its core and prompted long overdue conversations about issues of equity and privilege that have created an inequitable American landscape and historical record. The pandemic has also impacted every aspect of the historic preservation movement, from the shuttering of historic sites and the closing of Main Street businesses to reductions in state and local preservation program budgets. In this context, this frank discussion on the topics of philanthropy and preservation as social justice — and the need to tell the full story of our often-difficult history — will greatly contribute to the conversations we will have throughout the conference.

Under Walker’s leadership, the Ford Foundation recently became the first nonprofit foundation in U.S. history to issue a $1 billion social bond in the U.S. taxable bond market to increase grant making to stabilize and strengthen nonprofit organizations in the wake of the coronavirus. Before he ran the $13 billion international social justice philanthropy, Darren chaired the philanthropy committee that brought a resolution to the city of Detroit’s bankruptcy and oversaw global and domestic programs at the Rockefeller Foundation. Walker serves on many boards including the National Museum of African American History and Culture and the African American Cultural Heritage Action Fund.

Ifill began her career as a Fellow at the American Civil Liberties Union, before joining the staff of the LDF as an Assistant Counsel, where she litigated voting rights cases for five years. Ifill left LDF to join the faculty at University of Maryland School of Law in Baltimore. Over twenty years, Ifill taught civil procedure and constitutional law to thousands of law students, and pioneered a series of law clinics. Her book “On the Courthouse Lawn: Confronting the Legacy of Lynching in the 21st Century,” is credited with laying the foundation for contemporary conversations about lynching and reconciliation. In 2013, Ifill was invited back to the Legal Defense Fund–this time to lead the organization as its 7th Director-Counsel.

Join us for an inspirational discussion that will help guide us to places of truth and equity-driven outcomes.

The National Trust’s annual membership meeting will be held for the purpose of electing new members to our board of trustees. Visit savingplaces.org/board-of-trustees after September 28 to review this year’s slate of trustee nominees.

1:00-1:50 PM ET — Equitable Development Virtual Town Hall

Following an opening plenary presentation by Darren Walker, President of the Ford Foundation, this Virtual Town Hall will continue to explore an important question for the preservation movement: How can preservation be a force for advancing equitable development and social justice in African American neighborhoods and other communities of color?

Building off of findings from a preliminary report, Preserving Places for All: Toward Preservation-Based Equitable Development, which the National Trust will release this fall, you'll engage in an interactive session to speak with colleagues and allies in preservation across the country to uncover pressing issues across the movement to help advance an inclusive vision for the future of preservation that serves all communities, including the most vulnerable among us.

The global pandemic and social unrest catalyzed by the killing of George Floyd have further exposed underlying inequities across our communities, drawing urgent attention to the systemic barriers that continue to drive deeper disparities in health, safety, neighborhood stability, preservation, and opportunity. Preservationists around the country are grappling with questions that include: What is preservation in the 21st century? What is the role preservation plays in advancing the fight for equity and justice? What are the impacts of our current policies? What is working and what needs to change? Join your peers to discuss these and other questions related to historic resources, heritage, and building a more equitable future.

Using digital tools, this interactive session will provide a forum for open discussion and allow you to share your own beliefs and ideas for action. A selection of key readings will be made available in advance to provide a common basis of background data and information. Following our discussion, additional education sessions will allow you to explore specific questions in more depth and learn from innovative work that is underway across the country. The learnings from this session will be captured as part of a longer-term engagement process that will seek to elevate diverse stakeholders and voices across the movement toward the ultimate goal of developing a set of core principles and an impact agenda for the preservation movement.

Will I get a chance to talk in the town hall?

Everyone will get a chance to talk! Once you’re in the "room" for the event, you’ll be placed into small group breakouts where you can talk with your peers. Come prepared to join the discussion.

2:00-2:50 PM ET

  • African American Cultural Heritage Action Fund (AACHAF): A Best Practices Exchange
  • Buoyant City: Resiliency & Adaptation Guidelines for Historic Districts in Miami-Dade County & Miami Beach
  • Deep Dive Discussion about the Use of Integrity Standards
  • Preservation by Design: Future Architects Integrate Preservation into Their Path Forward
  • African American Cultural Heritage Action Fund (AACHAF): A Best Practices Exchange
    Tune in to hear from some of the African American Cultural Heritage Action Fund grantees who will share the good, the bad, and the future plans for their projects. Learn about the process for the National Trust’s AACHAF grants from both the applicant and grantor perspectives. Walk away inspired by projects that exemplify centuries of African American resilience, activism, and achievement in the United States.

    Buoyant City: Resiliency & Adaptation Guidelines for Historic Districts in Miami-Dade County & Miami Beach
    Over the next 60 years, many buildings in Miami-Dade County, particularly in Miami Beach, will need to be substantially rehabilitated/reconstructed to provide necessary resiliency to rising waters. How shall this be accomplished and will these areas survive as historic districts? Introduced in this session, the Buoyant City study argues that the Miami area’s vibrant historic districts should be preserved, must evolve to survive, and that preservation can be redeployed as a powerful adaptive tool. To do so, cities must reconsider their preservation standards and create mechanisms that will allow adaptive development that is incentivized. Hear from two historic preservation programs on the process and studies involved to update design guidelines, lessons learned, and best practices for implementation.

    Deep Dive Discussion about the Use of Integrity Standards
    The criteria for architectural significance and integrity is a frequently cited barrier to historic designation, especially in communities of color where some have disproportionately suffered from decades of disinvestment, resulting in poor building conditions, alterations, and demolitions. In 2016 that the National Park Service guidance loosened the interior integrity requirements for sites listed under Significance Criterion A. However, according to the preliminary report, “Preserving Places for All: Toward Preservation-Based Equitable Development,” a growing number of practitioners have advocated that the standards must become more flexible to account for layers of change and the loss of form and material integrity. Express your own thoughts about how we move forward as a movement in this discussion that specifically drills down on the topic of the Integrity Standards. Developed in partnership with the National Park Service.

    Preservation by Design: Future Architects Integrate Preservation into Their Path Forward
    How do we build more bridges between design and preservation communities? Preservation in Practice is a historic preservation practicum for Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) students pursuing degrees in architecture or construction management. The goal of this program is to encourage more African American architecture students, many of whom have had limited or no previous exposure to the field of historic preservation, to consider opportunities in historic preservation. Learn more about this cornerstone collaboration between the National Trust, National Park Service, Advisory Council on Historic Preservation, and select HBCUs. Hear from cohort alumni on the impacts of preservation on their studies and career trajectories and gain ideas for educating others in the design field about preservation values and practices.

    3:30-4:20 PM ET

  • A Dialog on Disaster: A Case Study of Puerto Rico
  • Map it to Save It: Information for Better Planning
  • Take A Virtual Tour of the Green Book
  • When the ‘70s Turn 50: Reckoning with the Era's Legacy
  • A Dialog on Disaster: A Case Study of Puerto Rico
    Tune in to a fascinating case study on how federal agencies collaborate on recovery efforts to support local communities after a disaster. In Puerto Rico, the Heritage Emergency National Task Force, a partnership between FEMA and the Smithsonian Institution, spearheaded efforts to aid the arts & culture sector and supported the Department of Interior work in the historic preservation sector to develop an action plan for recovery. Acknowledging the vast spectrum of Puerto Rico's cultural heritage, the Governor prioritized the island's historic properties in recovery efforts. In addition, since May 2018 the National Endowment for the Arts has deployed its Historic Preservation Officer to Puerto Rico, in coordination with federal and Puerto Rico partners, to advance preservation recovery efforts, including the assessment and repair of historic properties, development of long-term recovery plans, and documentation of historic properties. Learn from these best practices how combined efforts make a difference in the disaster dialog.

    Map it to Save It: Information for Better Planning
    Historic preservation agencies are increasing their use of Geographical Information Systems (GIS) in order to facilitate planning and review processes. Learn the importance of mapping historic places, through technological methods such as GIS, to identify cultural resources at the earliest stages of project development. This technology enables state and tribal preservation officers, and industry and federal agencies to easily communicate information which can expedite regulatory and project delivery time frames. Hear leaders across the industry share best practices on how mapping can make a difference in more efficient and effective preservation.

    Take A Virtual Tour of the Green Book
    Discover more about the Green Book guide for African American travelers by taking a virtual fields study with scholar and cultural documentarian Candacy Taylor, who will share an overview of the guide and her work researching Green Book sites in Harlem, NYC. Attendees will also learn from Natalie Pass Miller more about the Magnolia House in Greensboro, NC, a restored Green Book site patronized by African American authors, actors, and musicians from James Baldwin to James Brown.

    When the ‘70s Turn 50: Reckoning with the Era's Legacy
    Now that places built in the 1970s are coming of age, learn how preservationists are responding to this era and and reckoning with its legacy. In addition to new architectural forms, experimental materials, and the introduction of computer-aided design, the ‘70s are also all about citizen activism. Taking it to the streets gave rise to Black Power as well as LGBTQ to Chicano and Latinx movements. This decade also brought us a renewed push for women’s equality, important national environmental protections, and launched some of our now-leading preservation organizations. Through identification, preservation, and storytelling, learn how the ‘70s-built heritage provides us with an opportunity to both look back and forward simultaneously with movements like Me Too and Black Lives Matter.

    5:00-5:50 PM ET

  • Allapattah: Equitable Development Strategies for a Rapidly Changing Neighborhood
  • Demonstrating the Relevance of Preservation to Funders
  • Memorialization: Confederate Statues, African American Heritage, and Public Spaces (Free Event)
  • Preservation Priorities and Federal Advocacy- Post Election and the Start of the 117th Congress
  • Allapattah: Equitable Development Strategies for a Rapidly Changing Neighborhood
    Visit Allapattah, the heart of Miami's Dominican community. Faced with enormous development pressure, the National Association for Latino Community Asset Builders (NALCAB) created a working group of neighborhood and city-wide stakeholders to help stabilize small businesses. Taking lessons from NALCAB's work in other cities across the country, data and mapping tools have been developed to measure and predict where gentrification is taking place in Allapattah. See first-hand how Allapattah is establishing a Main Street program for holistic neighborhood revitalization by using these tools and strategies in partnership with local and regional groups.

    Demonstrating the Relevance of Preservation to Funders
    When fundraising during a time of crisis it is more important than ever to demonstrate the relevance of preservation to current needs. Learn strategies for fundraising during a pandemic and how to secure essential funds when your organization is not meeting front line needs.

    Memorialization: Confederate Statues, African American Heritage, and Public Spaces
    Hear a special conversation about the hundreds of Confederate memorials that stand in public spaces across the United States -- in courthouse squares, public parks, and along broad avenues. As Americans reckon with legacies of slavery and structures of systemic racism, many public officials, elected and appointed, are navigating previously un-charted waters as they respond to constituents’ demands to remove Confederate memorials from public spaces. As statues come down in some municipalities, hear how public officials also are supporting community-based efforts to create new memorials that acknowledge and commemorate our shared African American heritage, especially by preserving and interpreting African American heritage sites. Deepen your understanding of how public officials are thinking about historic preservation as a strategy for commemoration and reconciliation, and hear how lessons learned from the Confederate monument controversies that may be applied to the handling of other divisive memorials in public spaces.

    Preservation Priorities and Federal Advocacy- Post Election and the Start of the 117th Congress
    This session will provide an overview of key legislation that awaits final action by Congress after the election as well as a look ahead to possible historic preservation priorities in a new Congress and with a returning or new Administration. Panelists will discuss preservation priorities in FY 2021 appropriations, and potential legislation for public lands, infrastructure, disaster and COVID relief legislation, as well as Administration proposals for the National Register and preservation policies.

    6:00-7:00 PM ET

  • Creating a Preservation Story Through Zines
  • Virtual Tour: Where Women Made History Coast to Coast
  • Preservationist Game Night
  • Creating a Preservation Story Through Zines
    A zine (pronounced “zeen”) is a small, DIY, self-published work of original or appropriated texts and images. The format – unencumbered by rules relating to form, function, or purpose – allows makers to share stories about anything they are passionate about. As preservationists across the field work to expand the narrative of saving places, make preservation more inclusive, and reach new audiences, zines are one strategy you can easily add to your toolkit. You will learn tactics to create a concept for a communication campaign; methodologies to create a zine as a storytelling strategy; how to create captivating imagery; new ways to use archival resources. Participants will also learn how to curate their own personalized publication to voice their perspective, a community story, or a collaborative initiative on a topic that connects with them. Plus, you will get to contribute to a special mini-edition zine published as part of PastForward 2020 Online. Sponsored by Indow.

    Virtual Tour: Where Women Made History Coast to Coast
    Relax and enjoy a mini vacation to make up for those trips you weren't able to take this past year. This virtual tour will take you across the country in under an hour. Settle into a comfortable chair with the drink of your choice and hear fascinating stories about a few of the places where women made history from the comfort of your own home or office. Experts representing each site will be on hand to answer questions and engage in casual conversation.

    Preservationist Game Night
    Show off your knowledge of all things preservation in a fun game night with your preservation peers! Impress everyone with your mad preservation skills as you battle to be the winner and take the preservation crown!


    Thursday, October 29


    Governor Brian Vallo | Pueblo of Acoma

    11:45 AM-12:50 PM ET — Haakú, Híya’stíni, ee Síu’namasti: Pueblo of Acoma Concepts of Resilience and Promise

    As governor of one of the earliest continuously inhabited communities in the United States, Governor Brian Vallo is uniquely positioned to speak to the pressing issues facing our nation and the preservation movement today. During his talk, Governor Vallo will examine how indigenous knowledge systems and prophecy could help us achieve balance between humanity and our natural environment. He will also share how our collective resilience can become the beacon of hope and vision during this time of public health crisis and recovery.

    Lessons learned as the founding director of both the Acoma Historic Preservation Office and the Sky City Cultural Center and Haakú Museum will help others tell the full American story through oral history, artifacts and historic sites. For example, Governor Vallo served as director of the Indian Arts Research Center at the School for Advanced Research where he led the development and publication of protocols known as the Guidelines for Collaboration, a guide for how source communities and collecting institutions can work together to address the multitude of issues surrounding collections access, documentation, and stewardship. He continues to advise museums including the Field Museum, the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City, and the DeYoung Museum.

    During his tenure at the Historic Preservation Office, Governor Vallo led a campaign to establish the San Esteban del Rey Restoration initiative focused on the comprehensive rehabilitation of the Pueblo’s 1629 catholic mission. He also helped develop a preservation component of the Barbara Felix Architecture and Design firm that assisted with restoration and rehabilitation projects in Native American communities including the historic La Fonda on the Plaza Hotel in Sante Fe.

    Instrumental in establishing the Pueblo’s long-term relationship with the National Trust for Historic Preservation and other international, national and local preservation organizations, Governor Vallo will also share his thoughts about the relevance of preservation organizations today.

    1:00-1:50 PM ET — Mitigating and Adapting to a Changing Climate Town Hall

    Following an opening plenary presentation by Brian Vallo, Governor of Acoma Pueblo—the longest continually inhabited community in North America—all conference attendees will come together for a Town Hall discussion of climate change and historic resources.

    The effects of climate change are becoming increasingly apparent across the country and around the globe. Preservationists and community leaders are seeking strategies to manage and protect historic resources from rising sea levels, increased flooding, and more intensive wildfires. At the same time, we know that expanding our work to save, reuse, and retrofit older buildings can help reduce carbon pollution and lower the risk of even more severe climate change impacts.

    The unprecedented nature of this slow-moving global emergency presents new challenges to preservationists, as well as opportunities for greater relevance. Is our movement ready to meet this moment? Do some of our basic practices need to evolve and change? If so, how? Does our network have the information and resources we need to develop effective responses? How can our work address the inequitable impacts of climate change on underserved communities and people of color? Who are the partners we need to be working with to extend the reach and impact of our work?

    Using digital tools, this interactive session will provide a forum for open discussion and allow you to share your own beliefs and ideas for action. A selection of key readings will be made available in advance to provide a common basis of background data and information. Following our discussion, additional education sessions will allow you to explore specific questions in more depth and learn from innovative work that is underway across the country. The learnings from this session will be captured as part of a longer-term engagement process that will seek to elevate diverse stakeholders and voices across the movement toward the ultimate goal of developing a set of core principles and an impact agenda for the preservation movement.

    Will I get a chance to talk in the town hall?

    Everyone will get a chance to talk! Once you’re in the "room" for the event, you’ll be placed into small group breakouts where you can talk with your peers. Come prepared to join the discussion.

    2:00-2:50 PM ET

  • Historic Preservation and Affordable Housing: Repositioning Incentives and Confronting Barriers
  • Island Perspectives: Preservation, Sustainability, and the Environment (Free Event)
  • Preserving Sacred Places When They Become Vacant
  • Two Glass Houses: A Virtual Field Study
  • Historic Preservation and Affordable Housing: Repositioning Incentives and Confronting Barriers
    In a post-pandemic world, the affordable housing crisis is likely to become even more acute and The White House Council on Eliminating Regulatory Barriers to Affordable Housing identifies historic preservation as a barrier. Yet incentives like the Historic Tax Credit and the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit are frequently and effectively combined to create affordable housing. Hear nationally-recognized affordable housing experts share their perspectives and discuss the barriers, real and perceived, that stand in the way of preservation achieving its full potential. Gain practical suggestions from preservationists and affordable housing advocates alike on breaking down barriers to affordable housing and on working together more efficiently.

    Island Perspectives: Preservation, Sustainability, and the Environment
    From Bermuda, Saint Lucia, Puerto Rico, and Haiti, hear how sustainability is at the heart of their preservation work in an island context. Does caring for natural and cultural heritage together increase impact? Hear from preservation leaders from islands across the Americas as they tell their stories, and learn about the challenges and opportunities of working in these unique environments. Developed in partnership with the International National Trusts Organisation.

    Preserving Sacred Places When They Become Vacant
    Recognizing that more and more communities are struggling with how to advance the sensitive and sustainable reuse of historic churches and synagogues when congregations close or merge, this session will provide guidance and best practices on successfully transitioning sacred places to a new life. Partners will introduce tools such as asset-mapping, community engagement, and design charrettes, and will draw from its new "Guide to Transitioning Vacant Religious Property," that will provide faith leaders with models and case studies that encourage preservation-minded reuse. Partners will review several options such as sale/leaseback, co-ownership arrangements, and sale with covenants.

    Two Glass Houses: A Virtual Field Study
    Virtually visit two iconic modernist glass houses, the Farnsworth House and the Glass House. Learn about the people who designed them, who lived in them, who were inspired by them, and more about what makes each unique. Hear about the challenges of preserving and interpreting these unique sites.

    3:30-4:20 PM ET

  • Creating a More Diverse and Inclusive National Register
  • Gone With the Wedding?
  • The Deregulatory Agenda and Historic Preservation Law
  • What's the Big Idea of the Tidal Basin Ideas Lab?
  • Creating a More Diverse and Inclusive National Register
    The National Register of Historic Places is the official inventory of our country’s historic places that are considered “worthy of preservation.” However, since its inception, biases in our movement and our systems have skewed this list heavily in favor of certain narratives, with the result that only a small fraction of the nearly 100,000 designations recognize the diversity and complexity of the American story. How can the preservation community become better allies to diverse communities and take advantage of existing tools and resources to make the National Register a better reflection of our multi-layered, complicated, and diverse history?

    Panelists will share their most effective tools, incentives, tactics, and funding sources that you can use to circumvent structural barriers and begin to make the National Register a more equitable and truthful record of our history. Hear from our panelists about how they engage with traditional and non-traditional partners and underrepresented communities to promote a more inclusive National Register and preservation movement. Attendees will come away from this session inspired by the importance of this work and equipped with the tools necessary to tackle it in their own communities. Developed in partnership with the National Park Service.

    Gone With the Wedding?
    In late 2019, Color of Change, the country's largest online racial justice organization, raised important issues with the practice of hosting weddings at historic slave plantation sites, aka "plantation weddings." This prompted extensive press coverage and the creation of new policies by some of the nation's leading wedding organizing platforms. Is this the end of plantation parties? Hear panelists debate if sites with violent histories can host celebrations while respecting both past and present and deepen your own understanding on this topic.

    The Deregulatory Agenda and Historic Preservation Law
    A common theme at the state and federal level is a call to reduce regulations and streamline government decision-making. Historic preservation laws are not immune from this deregulatory trend. Hear an overview of deregulatory challenges facing preservation and if successful, could impact your work. The topics of this session are subject to change, but are expected to include: an update on proposed changes to the National Register of Historic Places regulations and impacts to Section 106; deregulatory trends in land use at the state level; understanding the impact of new National Environmental Policy Act regulations on preservation; public lands policy and litigation, including the Antiquities Act; opportunities to use the Congressional Review Act in the next Congress. Also learn how federal regulatory changes to the National Register and National Environmental Policy Act may impact federal project reviews and how to successfully advocate under the new rules.

    The Big Idea of the Tidal Basin Ideas Lab
    The National Mall Tidal Basin is one of our nation’s most iconic, significant, and beloved cultural landscapes and commemorative spaces—and it is endangered. The Tidal Basin Ideas Lab is a forum to boldly reimagine this important public space. Unlike a design competition, which typically selects a winner with a conclusive master plan, the Ideas Lab promotes an exchange of ideas between designers, stakeholders, and the public. Join a discussion with some of the country’s preeminent landscape architecture firms participating in the Ideas Lab to learn how they are boldly reimagining this iconic but threatened public space. Participating teams in the Ideas Lab include DLANDstudio, GGN, Hood Design Studio, James Corner Field Operations, and Reed Hilderbrand. Dive into a discussion about how these designers are considering critical factors like climate change, ecology, infrastructure, visitor experience, security, circulation, connectivity, cultural landscape, and historic preservation.

    5:00-5:50 PM ET

  • A New Framework for Blended Conservation of the Built and Natural Environment
  • A Review of the Guidelines on Flood Adaptation for Rehabilitation Historic Buildings
  • Preservation Planning for Commissions and Community Nonprofits
  • Uncovering and Uplifting LGBTQ History
  • A New Framework for Blended Conservation of the Built and Natural Environment
    The fields of land conservation and historic preservation have been operating in discrete silos in the United States. Yet, in the UK, these fields are blended into one organization that protects special places of all kinds. Using facilitated community visioning sessions and GIS mapping, learn about programs that will create integrated whole-community maps, helping citizens from all walks of life to identify and visualize high-priority areas that reflect the character of each unique community. Hear best practices about this process, which is driven solely by the desires of the residents to protect what matters to them, both land and buildings.

    A Review of the Guidelines on Flood Adaptation for Rehabilitation Historic Buildings
    Flooding risk has long been a major challenge for many historic properties. Changing weather patterns, stronger hurricanes and other extreme weather events, sea level rise, increased nuisance flooding, king tides, and continuing development in flood plains are some of the factors increasing the risk of flooding events, both in terms of their frequency and magnitude. Some historic properties that have never flooded before may now be exposed to this risk, and those that flooded infrequently in the past may experience more instances of flooding or of water reaching higher levels than ever before. In an effort to address this growing challenge, the National Park Service produced the Guidelines on Flood Adaptation for Rehabilitating Historic Buildings to provide guidance about how to adapt historic buildings to be more resilient to flooding risk in a manner that will preserve their historic character and that will meet The Secretary of the Interior’s Standards for Rehabilitation. Join this session to learn about the Guidelines development and application. Developed in partnership with the National Park Service

    Preservation Planning for Commissions and Community Nonprofits
    Preservation commissions and community nonprofits are most effective when their work is a part of the larger local planning process. Good planning can also strengthen grant applications and bring in money to the community. Using successful plans from around the country, this workshop covers the essential elements of preservation planning and how to integrate preservation as part of a broader planning effort -- not just an addition to it. Working with various types of plans and data requirements, participants will learn innovative techniques to involve the community and stakeholders; explore successful implementation techniques to assign responsibilities and to track performance measures. Plan types to be discussed will range from preservation planning to strategic planning to disaster and emergency planning for historic sites and communities.

    Uncovering and Uplifting LGBTQ History
    Learn about initiatives to document and preserve historic sites related to LGBTQ history in the state of Maryland and New York City. Speakers will advise on the best practices and process of unearthing this hidden history and producing the tools to help save the past. Hear panelists describe their process of finding funding and conducting research, and reflect on lessons learned from the process of telling these inclusive stories.

    Bob Vila

    6:00-7:00 PM ET — National Preservation Awards Ceremony
    Hosted by Bob Vila (Free Event)

    The National Preservation Awards, presented annually at the PastForward Conference, are bestowed upon distinguished individuals, nonprofit organizations, public agencies, and corporations whose skill and determination have given new meaning to their communities through preservation of our architectural and cultural heritage. These efforts include citizen attempts to save and maintain important landmarks; companies and craftsmen whose work restores the richness of the past; the vision of public officials who support preservation projects and legislation in their communities; and educators and journalists who help Americans understand the value of preservation.

    Join host Bob Vila for this event that is free and open to the public (attendees will still need to register to gain virtual access to the program.) The National Trust is excited to have Bob Vila joining us for this special event. For nearly 40 years Bob has hosted a variety of shows—This Old House, Bob Vila’s Home Again, Bob Vila, and Restore America with Bob Vila—while also supporting many causes dealing with housing and architectural preservation.


    Friday, October 30


    Patrice frey photo 2020
    Patrice Frey | Main Street America

    11:45 AM-12:50 PM ET — Celebrating 40 Years of Excellence on Main Street
    (Free Event)

    This year marks the 40th anniversary of the Main Street America, a program founded by the National Trust for Historic Preservation. Join president and ceo, Patrice Frey, as she explores how the movement has evolved over the past four decades and discusses the crucial role that Main Street programs are playing in supporting local economies through the current crisis. This will be followed by a very special awards presentation recognizing the 2020 Great American Main Street Award winning communities as well as the inaugural Mary Means Leadership Award recipient.

    1:00-1:50 PM ET — Preservation and Relevancy Town Hall: A Reckoning and Commitment to Act

    Following a plenary celebrating 40 years of Main Street, one of the most action-oriented programs for encouraging preservation, attendees will have the opportunity to share thoughts with their peers about our movement’s relevance to larger social issues and to a greater number of people.

    Relevance is defined as being practical and socially applicable. The preservation movement has been criticized, from outside and within, that our practices and tools are inflexible, inequitable and inaccessible to a wider audience. Some suggest there is no longer a preservation movement, as we lack cohesion, consistent messaging, and a strategic national agenda. Reckoning with and reconciling these claims has been an ongoing and difficult process, yet many in the preservation field feel we need to move on from talking and take decisive actions to evolve preservation.

    Throughout the conference, we will have discussed the many paths we can take towards a more resilient and relevant preservation movement. But how will we know when our work has become accessible, just and socially applicable at this critical moment in our nation’s history? Join this town hall discussion to share your personal beliefs, relay experiences you’ve had and express opinions about the most urgent actions we as a movement need to take to foster our relevance.

    Using digital tools, this interactive session will provide a forum for open discussion and allow you to share your own beliefs and ideas for action. A selection of key readings will be made available in advance to provide a common basis of background data and information. Following our discussion, additional education sessions will allow you to explore specific questions in more depth and learn from innovative work that is underway across the country. The learnings from this session will be captured as part of a longer-term engagement process that will seek to elevate diverse stakeholders and voices across the movement toward the ultimate goal of developing a set of core principles and an impact agenda for the preservation movement.

    Will I get a chance to talk in the town hall?

    Everyone will get a chance to talk! Once you’re in the "room" for the event, you’ll be placed into small group breakouts where you can talk with your peers. Come prepared to join the discussion.

    2:00-2:50 PM ET

  • The Confederate Monument Debate: International Perspectives on the Future of Monuments with Difficult Pasts (Free Event)
  • A Conversation with Richard H. Driehaus Foundation National Preservation Award Recipients and Jurists
  • A Culture of Resiliency- the Climate Heritage Network champions new synergies for a more sustained future
  • How the Pandemic is affecting Real Estate and Land Use
  • The Confederate Monument Debate: International Perspectives on the Future of Monuments with Difficult Pasts
    The recent deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and countless others have led to massive protests across the United States calling for social justice in the name of Black Lives Matter. The destruction of Confederate memorials depicting white supremacists and slave owners has become a central issue in these protests. In recent years, protestors from Paris to Cape Town have made similar demands to remove monuments with roots in colonialism, imperialism and systemic racism. This global movement highlights fundamental debates surrounding cultural preservation, notions of global heritage and ownership, and the public sphere. How do we make decisions about these monuments and places that are inclusive and representative of multiple perspectives?

    This conversation, co-presented by World Monuments Fund and the National Trust for Historic Preservation, invites scholars, artists, activists and preservationists to explore these questions in light of the renewed awareness of the complicated symbolism and memory associated with monuments. This event is part of World Monuments Fund’s Heritage Now series—a look at world heritage through the lens of current political, social, and environmental issues. Developed in partnership with the World Monuments Fund.

    A Conversation with Richard H. Driehaus Foundation National Preservation Award Recipients and Jurists
    Join a conversation between the 2020 Richard H. Driehaus Foundation National Preservation Awards recipients and the jury of national experts who selected these inspiring projects. Learn about the diverse history of these sites, the details of the projects, their community impact, and the challenges faced during restoration. Walk away inspired to tackle your own preservation projects.

    A Culture of Resiliency- the Climate Heritage Network champions new synergies for a more sustained future
    Between technological innovation and individual choice lies the communal realm, a social world of remembering, sharing, and belonging that binds people to places and to each other. This session will showcase the efforts of the Climate Heritage Network, the role that arts, culture and heritage play in achieving a climate-resilient world. The program highlights concrete culture-based strategies being implemented through new partnerships between cultural actors and stakeholders across sectors. It addresses specific barriers that have sometimes hindered such multi-stakeholder collaborations and ties these resilience measures to key themes such as food and agriculture and cities and the built environment.

    How the Pandemic is affecting Real Estate and Land Use
    Even before the pandemic, communities were feeling the effects of a rapidly evolving economic climate, with major impacts on local real estate and land use. Join Ed McMahon, Senior Resident Fellow at the Urban Land Institute, as he examines how the pandemic is accelerating changes already underway. He also will explore how the crisis is creating both new problems and new opportunities for community leaders, preservationists, developers, and downtown advocates. Following the presentation, hear from two Main Street leaders who will share how they are adapting to the changing environment through innovation and creativity.

    3:30-4:20 PM ET

  • Challenges and Success Stories for Rehabbing the Recent Past: Case Studies from the Federal Tax Incentives Program
  • Creating More Equitable and Resilient Main Streets
  • Effective Strategies for Inclusive Community Outreach
  • Pushing Preservation Through Art and Placemaking
  • Challenges and Success Stories for Rehabbing the Recent Past: Case Studies from the Federal Tax Incentives Program
    The introduction of many new materials and building techniques in the twentieth century has had a number of implications for preservationists. New challenges exist for assessing and preserving the fabric of these new structures, as well as recognizing and appreciating their significance. This program is an overview of the challenges and issues that arise when dealing with buildings of the recent past, particularly mid-century modern buildings constructed after World War II. Hear how modern buildings are being successfully rehabilitated using the Standards for Rehabilitation with several case study examples of projects that were completed through the Federal tax incentives program. Developed in partnership with the National Park Service.

    Creating More Equitable and Resilient Main Streets
    The dual crises of COVID-19 and structural racism pose a direct challenge to our work: how will this moment shape revitalization and preservation in the years to come, and what will it take to create more equitable and resilient Main Streets? How can we, as a movement, meet the moment? Join Vu Le, nonprofit leader and blogger, in conversation with Main Street professionals to bring hard truths, insight, and humor to the need for organizational and systemic change.

    Effective Strategies for Inclusive Community Outreach
    Effective community engagement requires an ability to connect with people who may be different than you—whether that is because of race, ethnicity, gender, sexuality, culture, language, or ability. Hear advice on ethical listening and successful outreach strategies to use with different groups with a specific focus on engaging Native American tribes around tribal preservation issues. Learn more about barriers and challenges in past tribal outreach, lessons learned, and recommendations to foster respectful and collaborative engagement between tribes and other preservation entities in the future.

    Pushing Preservation Through Art and Placemaking
    Hear how practitioners are using placemaking and the arts in creative ways to foster community involvement in historic preservation. Learn how to inspire locals to become involved in sharing their history through writing, placemaking events, and community networking. Hear panelists discuss the various channels available to further preservation goals, suggest innovative ways to be inclusive, and advise on how to attract a larger demographic to grassroots preservation efforts. Learn best practices and strategic ways to find new allies who can support your preservation mission.

    George Takei | Greater Talent Network, LLC.

    5:00-6:00 PM ET — Closing Plenary
    An Afternoon with George Takei

    With a career spanning five decades, George Takei is known around the world for his founding role in the acclaimed television series Star Trek, in which he played Hikaru Sulu, helmsman of the Starship Enterprise. But George Takei's story goes where few stories have gone before. From a childhood spent with his family wrongfully imprisoned in a Japanese American Internment Camp during WWII, to becoming one of the country's leading figures in the fight for social justice, LGBTQ rights, and marriage equality—George Takei remains a powerful voice.

    George’s activism has taken many forms. He is chairman emeritus and trustee of the Japanese American National Museum in Los Angeles and serves as National Honorary Chair of the fundraising effort to restore the Harada House in Riverside, California, an important civil rights National Historic Landmark. Takei also served for 11 years on the Board of Directors of the Southern California Rapid Transit District as Los Angeles Mayor Tom Bradley’s appointee. Mayor Bradley’s mission to Takei was to get started building the first subway network in Los Angeles which is now not only operating but is being extended.

    During this intimate conversation, George will share how storytelling through artifacts and sites associated with our often-difficult history is powerful and critically important to us as Americans. Through personal stories and humor, he will help us recognize that we can move towards a positive future despite the challenges we face. As a community activist who has successfully used social media to drive his points home, George will inspire us to speak out loudly and proudly as American citizens who care deeply about our shared history.

    Those who say there are no second acts in American life don’t know George Takei. For the young boy who spent his childhood in a Japanese American internment camp for persons of Japanese ancestry, life has offered not just a second act, but a third, fourth and fifth—with many, one hopes, still to come.

    6:00-7:00 PM ET

  • A Gathering for Those who Love Museums and Historic Sites
  • Happy Hour for City Planners/Local Government Preservation Staff
  • National Trust Advisors Networking Event
  • Networking for Architects/Design Profession
  • Main Street Happy Hour
  • Meet Your Nonprofit Preservation Partners
  • Students and Young Preservationists Happy Hour
  • A Gathering for Those who Love Museums and Historic Sites
    Join with colleagues of all experience levels in historic houses or sites at this fun networking event. Relax, share stories, and look forward together at the end of a terrific conference.

    Happy Hour for City Planners/Local Government Preservation Staff/Local Commissioners
    Join us for an urban planning-themed discussion and virtual toast that Jane Jacobs would have loved! Lift a glass while meeting your local government peers from around the nation and share stories from our local experiences during this unprecedented year. As she did in the famous photo of her in the White Horse Tavern in NYC, Jane Jacobs liked to drink beer – so if that appeals to you, grab one in her honor. For a cocktail, might we suggest you join her (in spirit) at the White Horse and try their “Across West 11th St” wine glass cocktail (2 parts St Germain, 1 part Combier, dash lemon juice, 2 slices cucumber, topped with 6-10 parts sparkling wine to taste) or visit their menu for more inspiration. (PS - If you’re wondering how we know she liked beer, check this out.)

    National Trust Advisors Networking Event
    Join your fellow National Trust Advisors for a virtual happy hour where we will discuss program highlights and individual achievements from the past year followed by regional breakouts. Breakout rooms will be pre-assigned through Zoom. The discussion prompt for these smaller groups will be, What have you accomplished during this unprecedented year? Please come prepared to discuss and share helpful links and resources through the chat box. This session will be led by Advisors Chair Jean Follett, Vice Chair Alicia Leuba, and Public Policy Chair Kak Slick and joined by National Trust staff from the Preservation Division. This event is open to Advisors only.

    Networking for Architects/Design Profession
    Discuss one positive and one challenge of the pandemic's impacts on historic buildings with your favorite beverage in hand. Hosted by Liz Hallas, member of the AIA National Historic Resources Advisory Committee, Trustee for the Colorado Historical Foundation and principal of ANDERSON HALLAS ARCHITECTS.

    Main Street Happy Hour
    Connect with Main Streeters from across the country for a celebratory happy hour. Come prepared to discuss ideas and takeaways from the conference, share success stories from your downtown, test your Main Street knowledge with a competitive but fun game of trivia, and raise a glass to this year’s Great American Main Street Award winners. Everyone is welcome! RSVP here.

    Meet Your Nonprofit Preservation Partners
    Join with peers from the National Preservation Partners Network to build relationships and swap stories. Representatives of organizations of all sizes and shapes welcome!

    Students and Young Preservationists Happy Hour
    Join us for the annual convening of young preservationists from across the country. Whether you are still in school, an emerging preservationist, or a veteran in the field, we hope you will be part of this lively conversation on the future of preservation and share your work with us. Sponsored by Indow.

    We greatly appreciate the guidance and assistance provided by the PastForward National Steering Committee members.

    Need a hard copy? Simply print this page using your browser print function.

    Join us for PastForward Online 2020, the historic preservation event of the year, October 27-30, 2020.

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