Press Release | Washington, DC | November 4, 2021

National Preservation Awards Showcase the Leaders in Preservation

Each year the National Trust for Historic Preservation honors those doing important preservation work in their communities with the National Preservation Awards at its annual PastForward Conference. The National Trust celebrated the achievements of nine recipients in seven award categories during a virtual ceremony on the evening of Thursday, November 4th.

The National Preservation Awards are bestowed on those whose skill and determination have made a positive impact in their communities through preservation of our architectural and cultural heritage. This year’s recipients demonstrate the power of new community-centered activations of important landmarks; the deep significance of cultural landscapes and their ongoing stewardship; the perseverance of individuals and organizations using historic places to tell the full, true history of our country; the importance of companies and crafts people whose work restores the richness of the past; and the visionary leadership of public officials who support preservation projects and legislation from the local to the federal level.

“The National Preservation Awards are an inspiring showcase of how historic preservation continues to evolve as a powerful force that builds stronger communities throughout our country,” said Paul Edmondson, president and CEO of the National Trust for Historic Preservation. “This year’s PastForward theme is Lead the Change, and our award recipients truly are doing just that for particular places and for the national preservation movement. It is an honor to present these awards to the 2021 recipients to recognize the important work they are doing around the country.”

This year’s recipients were honored at the virtual National Preservation Awards ceremony hosted by television host and preservationist Bob Vila, who serves as a trustee of the National Trust for Historic Preservation. The awards ceremony also included a special tribute to the late Richard H. Driehaus and his tremendous legacy of national and international preservation philanthropy. The event was part of PastForward Online 2021 and can be viewed for free from

Visit to learn more.


  • Louise du Pont Crowninshield Award for Lifetime Achievement: Patricia M. O’Donnell, FASLA, ACIP, F. ICOMOS, Charlotte, Vermont
  • American Express Aspire Award: Jordan Ryan, Indianapolis, Indiana
  • Trustees’ Award for Organizational Excellence: WeGOJA Foundation, Statewide, South Carolina
  • The National Trust/Advisory Council on Historic Preservation Award for Federal Partnerships in Historic Preservation: Black Officers Club, Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri
  • The John H. Chafee Trustees Award for Outstanding Achievement in Public Policy: U.S. House Majority Whip James E. Clyburn (SC-06), South Carolina
  • The Trustees Emeritus Award for Historic Site Stewardship: China Alley Preservation Society, Hanford, California


  • Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library, Washington, DC
  • Moynihan Train Hall, New York, New York
  • Milwaukee Soldiers Home, Milwaukee, Wisconsin

PastForward Conference

PastForward is the annual conference of the National Trust for Historic Preservation, November 2-5, attracting thousands of people passionate about saving places. Attendees include preservationists, advocates and architects, city planners and historic site directors, students and elected officials, commissioners, and main street directors. This year’s theme is Lead the Change, focusing on the topics of promoting equity and justice through historic preservation, adapting to a changing climate, and sharpening essential practices of preservation.


The National Trust for Historic Preservation, a privately funded nonprofit organization, works to save America’s historic places. | @savingplaces

Share your stories from Route 66! Whether a quirky roadside attraction, a treasured business, or a piece of family history, we are looking for your stories from this iconic highway.

Share Your Story