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2024 Oregon Heritage Excellence Awards Announced

Individuals, organizations and projects that have made outstanding contributions to preserving Oregon’s heritage will receive Oregon Heritage Excellence Awards April 18 in Hillsboro.

“The Award recipients are representative of efforts and activities that are exemplary and go above and beyond for an individual, organization, and project, serving as a model for heritage preservation work in Oregon,” said Katie Henry, Coordinator for the Oregon Heritage Commission. “This year we had a large number of nominations of individuals which goes to show the importance of the people doing this work with passion and creativity and the local, regional, and statewide impact they have.”

2024 Oregon Heritage Excellence Award recipients are:

  • Maxville Heritage Interpretive Center for exceptional work in preserving the Maxville townsite, a multi-racial logging community established in Wallowa County in the 1920s.The multi-phased approach included acquisition of the land, project of the last remaining building, archaeological research, and listing the site on the National Register of Historic Places.
  • Oscar Hult for his service and dedication to preserving and promoting Albany’s heritage.
  • Talent Historical Society’s Documenting the Almeda Fire project, for a comprehensive documentation project following the 2020 Almeda Fire that had a devastating impact on communities in Southern Oregon.
  • US Army Corps of Engineers for the Willamette Valley Project Section 106 Programmatic Agreement resulting in a groundbreaking approach to consultation and setting a new standard for collaborative decision-making in historic preservation efforts.
  • Peggy Sigler for over three decades of impact in preserving Oregon’s heritage, promoting its value, and heritage advocacy efforts.
  • Salem’s Historic Landmarks Commission and its innovative approach in protecting cultural and archaeological resources that serves as a model locally and nationally.
  • Kelly Cannon-Miller for her dedication, strategic vision, and collaborative spirit in Deschutes County heritage preservation efforts and beyond.
  • Kimberly Moreland for her dedication to and service in documenting, preserving, and championing Oregon's heritage with a focus on Oregon’s African American history.
  • The Liberty Theatre, Home of the Little Theatre on the Bay in North Bend, for their extensive renovation effort preserving the theatre's 1924 architecture while modernizing its amenities and accessibility.
  • Mark Beach for his 30 years of service in researching and sharing Oregon’s North Coast history.
  • Mary Jo Morelli for her dedicated advocacy for historical preservation and education in Forest Grove for over five decades.
  • The 2024 Sally Donovan Award for Historic Cemetery Preservation goes to Cricket Soules for nearly two decades of work transforming the Marshfield Pioneer Cemetery from a neglected site into a vibrant community space and educational resource.

In addition to the 12 recipients of a 2024 Oregon Heritage Excellence Award, the Oregon Heritage Commission will also be recognizing 18 standout heritage volunteers from heritage organizations across the state and their critical contributions to heritage preservation efforts in Oregon.

Award recipients will be honored and presented with their award on April 18, 6pm-9pm, at the Venetian, 253 E Main Street, Hillsboro. The Awards Presentation and Dinner is part of the 2024 Oregon Heritage Conference events. Those wanting to attend the Awards event must purchase tickets in advance. Tickets can be purchased here.

The Oregon Heritage Excellence Awards are a program of Oregon Heritage, part of the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department.

For more information, contact Katie Henry at 503-877-8834 or katie.henry@oprd.oregon.gov.

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