Sunday, September 23, 2018

Historic Wintersburg historian and chair Mary Urashima to receive President's Award

ABOVE: Photographs taken a century apart, with a group from the California Preservation Foundation in 2013 contemplating the monumental history at Historic Wintersburg as Yukiko Yajima Furuta and Charles Mitsuji Furuta look back at them from 1913. (Historical photograph courtesy of the Furuta family. Present-day photograph courtesy of Chris Jepsen. Technical mash up courtesy of Ken Hayashida.) © ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

   The California Preservation Awards are a statewide hallmark, showcasing the best in historic preservation. The awards ceremony includes the presentation of the Preservation Design Awards and the President’s Awards, bringing together more than 300 people each year to share and celebrate excellence in preservation.

   This October, Historic Wintersburg historian and preservation task force chair Mary Urashima will receive the President's Award.

   "Mary Urashima is a tireless – and effective – advocate for the preservation of the historic Wintersburg and the historic Furuta Farm and Wintersburg Presbyterian Mission Complex. This site was listed on the National Trusts “11 Most Endangered Places” and was designated a “National Treasure” by the National Trust for Historic Preservation." Read more at Mary Adams Urashima on the California Preservation Foundation website.

RIGHT: Historian and chair of the Historic Wintersburg preservation task force, Mary Adams Urashima. Her book, Historic Wintersburg in Huntington Beach, was published in 2014 (History Press) and she is researching for a second book relating to Historic Wintersburg. © ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

   Since 1983, over 500 projects have been recognized with a Preservation Design Award. Winning projects are selected by a jury of top professionals in the fields of architecture, engineering, planning, and history, as well as renowned architecture critics and journalists. The jury selects projects that have furthered, to a notable degree, the purposes of the profession, consistent with the California Preservation Foundation’s mission.

   The President’s Awards honor people deserving of special recognition for their outstanding preservation efforts. Since its inception in 1991, this program has recognized individuals and organizations whose work allows others to gain a deeper appreciation of historic resources and their value to California’s economy, environment and quality of life. All proceeds from this event support the California Preservation Foundation’s statewide education and advocacy programs.

   Also receiving a President's Award this year are Milford Wayne Donaldson, Janet Hansen and KFA Santa Monica.

   Milford Wayne Donaldson is a former President of the California Preservation Foundation, Chair of the State Historical Building Safety Board, State Historic Preservation Officer and appointed by President Obama to serve as the Chair of the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation.

   Janet Hansen’s career has been devoted to expanding understanding of the built environment, most notably as the coordinator of the groundbreaking SurveyLALos Angeles’ first-ever comprehensive program to identify significant historic resources throughout the city.

   In the late 1990’s, KFA helped to spark the resurgence of the historic core in downtown Los Angeles under the City's Adaptive Reuse Ordinance. The firm designed the first three buildings under this landmark ordinance in the Old Bank District, and have since rehabilitated over 40 historic buildings throughout the City. This award recognizes KFA’s critical role in the renaissance of downtown Los Angeles

LEFT: The lobby of the Millennium Biltmore Hotel, an early home to the Oscars. (Courtesy of Millennium Biltmore,

   The California Preservation Awards will be held Friday, October 19, at the historic Millennium Biltmore Hotel, built in 1923 and designated a Los Angeles Historic-Cultural Monument in 1969. The Millennium Biltmore was an early home to the Academy Awards Ceremony.  The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences was founded in the Crystal Ballroom in May 1927, with a legend that the design for the Oscar was sketched on a Biltmore linen napkin.

   Support the preservation of California's unique history in an award-winning historic setting.  More about the California Preservation Awards and ticket information at California Preservation Foundation  Proceeds support the statewide education and advocacy programs of the California Preservation Foundation.

© All rights reserved.  No part of the Historic Wintersburg blog may be reproduced or duplicated without prior written permission from the author and publisher, M. Adams Urashima.