Speakers & Sessions


2016 and Beyond: NPS & the National Historic Preservation Program

Dr. Stephanie Toothman | National Park Service, Associate Director for Cultural Resources

The Landmark society is honored to have Dr. Stephanie Toothman, the Associate Director of Cultural Resources for the National Park Service, deliver our keynote address.  Dr. Toothman’s session will focus on the 100th Anniversary of the National Park Service and the 50th Anniversary of the National Historic Preservation Act with an emphasis on where historic preservation in the country is headed.

SESSION BLOCK 1 – 10:15-11:15 AM

Working with Your State Historic Preservation Office

Julian Adams | New York State Historic Preservation Office

Julian Adams, Community Liaison Coordinator for the Certified Local Government program, will present an overview of SHPO programs and explain how your community or project can best work with these programs. This session will answer questions such as: What does SHPO do? What does SHPO not do? When can I or should I call SHPO? How can SHPO staff help me and my community? How can I best work with SHPO staff?

Profitable Preservation: Making Commercial Tax Credits Work for You

Jason Yots | Preservation Studios

This session will be geared towards the small downtown village and will provide valuable information for commercial property owners who might be considering a rehab project and community advocates and municipal leaders trying to spur community revitalization. The session will address the economics that motivate many smaller communities to invest in preservation and will explain the real estate economics and financial tools key to a successful rehab tax credit project.

Outside the Box & Into the Spotlight

Larry Francer | Assoc. Director of Preservation, Landmark Society of Western New York
Angela E. Soper | President, Rangewriter Company
Jerome M. Herron | Producer, Courthouse Girls of Farmland

The folks in Farmland, Indiana (population 1450 last count) have proven that innovative fundraising, a controversial calendar, and a determination to make your community’s past an integral part of its future can be valuable assets when it comes to boosting economic development in communities small or large.  And if you think your town is too small to grab national attention and to generate new business, think again. Take a step on the wild and fun side and learn how Historic Farmland USA has fostered business growth, historic restoration, and new interest in a community that was crumbling away just 20 years ago.

SESSION BLOCK 2 – 11:30-12:30 PM

Engaging Young Professionals in Your Community

Buffalo’s Young Preservationists & Perry’s Young Professionals & Preservationists

How can you engage the next generation in preservation advocacy and community revitalization efforts? Do young people care about preservation? Representatives from these two groups will introduce their organizations and explain how they have engaged young professionals in community-based issues and projects. Using their own successful projects as examples, Buffalo’s Young Preservationists and Perry’s Young Professionals and Preservationists will prove that young professionals do care and may, in fact, have more to bring to the table that many might assume.

Outside the Pulpit — Repair, Reuse & Funding Strategies for Religious Properties

Ann Friedman | New York Landmarks Conservancy
Virginia Searl | Bero Architecture, PLLC
Monica McCullough | Executive Director, Providence Housing Development Corporation

In this session, Ann Friedman will discuss the New York Landmark Conservancy’s Sacred Sites Grant Program.  Using several local projects with Conservancy grant funding as examples, Virginia Searl will summarize commonly funded maintenance and repair work and discuss the challenges religious communities face in their efforts to retain their historic buildings. Monica McCullough will present a case study of the adaptive use of the Holy Rosary Church campus in Rochester, highlighting design challenges, financing, and the larger development project, which will provide affordable housing and community space.

Main Street, LLC: Community Entrepreneurism & the Case for Private Sector Rehab

Rick Hauser | AIA LEED AP, In.Site: Architecture

This session will speak about the imperative of “community entrepreneurism,” with a focus on the steps involved and the nuts and bolts of buying and rehabilitating downtown buildings. Rick will describe the reasons and structure behind creating a community-wide investment group to tackle major rehab projects and use previous successes as examples to walk through the process.

Project Spotlight: Commercial & Homeowner Tax Credit Case Studies

Preservation League of New York State

Preservation League staff will present case studies of successful homeowner and commercial tax credit projects throughout Upstate New York. Commercial case studies will demonstrate the local economic impact of each project and explain the financing and planning that made the projects a reality. Homeowner case studies will illustrate the type of rehab work that can qualify for tax credits and provide personal testimony from homeowners who have gone through the process.


A New York State of Mind: Preservation Today & Tomorrow

Ruth Pierpont | Deputy SHPO, New York State Historic Preservation Office

Ruth Pierpont will give her take on where our state stands in the preservation field from her unique position as head of the State Historic Preservation Office.  With her years of experience not only at the state level but also as the past president of the National Conference of Historic Preservation Officers, Ms. Pierpont will also guide us into the future of preservation in the Empire State.

SESSION BLOCK 3 – 1:45-2:45 PM

Case Study: Rehab of the Clarkson Academy

Mary Edwards | Clarkson Historical Society
Don Lage | Clarkson Historical Society

The restoration of the 1850s Clarkson Academy on Ridge Road (Route 104) is, to date, the foremost preservation project in the town of Clarkson, Monroe County.   Located on the campus of the adjacent Congregational Church, the handsome, two-story, Academy building is unique in Monroe County, but, due to changing times, had been vacant for over 30 years.  In the mid 1990s, a group of local citizens were concerned about several new projects proposed for the historic hamlet.  The creation of the Clarkson Historical Society resulted from these meetings and their energies became directed at restoring this remarkable Greek Revival building.  Thousands of volunteer hours, funding from a wide variety of sources, the support of Town officials, and the creative talents of a team of local residents and craftsmen have resulted in the renewal of an important building that now hosts programs in keeping with its original purpose as a community center and educational facility.

Get Those Historic Homeowner Tax Credits: Everything You Need to Know

Andrea Rebeck | Architect & Historic Homeowner

Nobody likes paperwork, but if it will put some money back in your pocket, it is worth it.  This session will show you how to use New York’s Historic Homeowners Rehab Tax Credit to help pay for preservation work on your historic home.  Using her own house as an example, architect Andrea Rebeck will lead you step-by-step through the application process.  She will demystify the regulations, clarify the requirements, and offer tips for working successfully with the State Historic Preservation Office to ensure a satisfying project.

Creating More Livable, Walkable Communities

Mark Fenton | Public Health Planning & Transportation Consultant

In this session, Mark will describe the attributes that characterize more walkable, bicycle-friendly settings, and the successes of specific communities.  He will suggest concrete steps individuals, neighborhoods, professionals, companies, and governments can take to immediately begin to alter their environments more positively.

Home-Grown Historic Preservation: Creating a Huge National Register Historic District, Out of the Box & In the Neighborhood

Meagan Baco | Multi-media Communications Specialist, Clinton Brown Company Architecture, PC
Kenneth A. Rogers | Chair, RANHDI Community Council, Buffalo
Jennifer Walkowski | Architectural Historian, Clinton Brown Company Architecture, PC

How did I they do it? Learn from some of the people involved how neighborhood residents and their friends worked together to create the largest, state historic tax credit-eligible National Register Historic District in upstate New York, through their own initiative that enlisted the support of  two thousand stakeholders protecting two thousand historic resources.


Main Street & Beyond: Successful Revitalization Initiatives in Brockport

Bill Andrews | Village of Brockport Trustee

In this field session, Brockport Village Trustee and all-around Brockport enthusiast and promoter, Bill Andrews, will tour participants through downtown Brockport, highlighting preservation successes that have contributed to Brockport’s thriving downtown district. NOTE: This is a walking session. Please wear appropriate footwear and clothing.

Community Active Living Assessment

Mark Fenton | Public Health Planning & Transportation Consultant

In this field session, participants will walk the community, looking for fundamental elements that encourage and discourage active lifestyles. This is an opportunity to not just see but to experience the built environment as a pedestrian and recognize the impact (or absence) of everything from mundane features such as curb ramps and crosswalks, to multi-use trails, traffic calming, and mixed-use environments. Participants will learn how to assess their own communities. NOTE: This is a walking session. Please wear appropriate footwear and clothing.

Community Design Charrette: Stone Warehouse, 60 Clinton St.

Led by the Rochester Regional Community Design Center

Citizens, elected officials, community advocates, and anyone with an interest in community development and the future of this building are encouraged to attend this unique Conference session.  The charrette will begin with a brief orientation presentation, which will include background information on the building, the importance of design in the public realm, and the economic potential of rehabilitating historic industrial buildings such as the warehouse.  Participants will then be divided into focus groups to visit the site and return to Cooper Hall to brainstorm and sketch their vision for the future of the building. RRCDC staff and design professionals (architects, landscape architects, and planners) will facilitate discussion. At the end of the charrette, participants will come back together to present their groups’ ideas.


>>Conference Location Information

>>Schedule At A Glance

>>The Courthouse Girls of Farmland pre-Conference screening 

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