BOSTON, MA — Secretary of the Commonwealth William F. Galvin, Chair of the Massachusetts Historical Commission, has announced that preservation advocate Virginia Adams of Reading has received a 2018 Massachusetts Historical Commission Preservation Award.
“The Massachusetts Historical Commission is proud to recognize the extraordinary accomplishments of this year’s awardees,” said Galvin. “I am delighted to recognize Virginia Adams with a Local Preservationist Award. For 40 years, Adams has dedicated herself to preservation in Reading. Her leadership began the comprehensive survey of old properties in the town, led to the rescue of several historically significant buildings, and has raised awareness of the importance of the town’s history among its population. Her efforts are a model of preservation leadership at the local level and, in addition to her many achievements, her work has laid the groundwork for future preservation efforts in Reading.”
Adams began her preservation career in Reading 40 years ago with her work to establish the town’s Historical Commission, a body she has served on in various capacities ever since. She was also a key participant in the first study of old properties in Reading, which led to the establishment of the town’s historical and architectural inventory and the list of structures protected under the town’s demolition delay bylaw.
The survey also identified properties potentially eligible for inclusion in the National Register of Historic Places, and while chairing the Historical Commission she led the successful effort to nominate more than 100. Her advocacy work has resulted in a number of preservation success stories for the town, including the restoration of two First Period houses.
In addition to efforts to document and save Reading’s historic resources, Adams is involved in educational programs including history-focused walking tours, the installation of granite pavers downtown highlighting important people and events, and the creation of the Reading Municipal Light Department’s annual Historical Calendar.
This is the 40th year of MHC’s Preservation Awards program. Projects are considered annually for awards in the categories of Rehabilitation and Restoration, Adaptive Reuse, Education and Outreach, Archaeology, Stewardship, and Landscape Preservation. Individuals are considered in the categories of Lifetime Achievement and Local Preservationist.
Galvin serves as the chair of the 17-member Massachusetts Historical Commission.
(NOTE: The above press release is from the Secretary of State’s Office.)
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