MONTPELIER, Vt. – The Norwich Historic Preservation Commission has been selected as the 2016 Commission of the Year by the National Alliance of Preservation Commissions (NAPC). The NAPC Commission Excellence Awards recognize and honor the outstanding efforts and achievements of local historic preservation district and landmark commissions, and boards of architectural review. The NAPC Commission Excellence Awards are the only national awards program specific to the work of local preservation commissions.
"We appreciate the award greatly,” said Peter Brink, vice-chair of the Norwich Historic Preservation Commission. “The first chair of our board, Nancy Hoggson, was our great leader and partner in this until her death of cancer in January 2015 and deserves much of the credit. The Town of Norwich and its Planning Director provide excellent support, and the Norwich Historical Society is critical with its historical research and assistance.”
The award honors the Norwich Historic Preservation Commission’s outstanding work in raising awareness about Norwich’s rich historic, architectural and cultural resources. NAPC’s Awards Committee was struck by the breadth and scope of the commission’s interests and activities, including completion of a town-wide architectural survey, initiation of National Register nominations, production of a walking tour brochure, development of a website and the recent effort to document mid-century modern structures in Norwich. One of the commission’s most impressive projects was the production of the exhibit and film Cycles of Change-Farming in Norwich, which documents Norwich’s family farms and the important part these farms play in the cultural heritage of the community. Many of these projects were funded in part with grants from the National Park Service through the Certified Local Government program, of which Norwich is an active member.
“This award highlights the essential role that local historic preservation commissions play in preserving our historic communities,” said Laura Trieschmann, State Historic Preservation Officer. “The success of the Norwich commission is the result of the hard work of the commission members and the partnerships they have created locally, and their ability to engage the community with innovative and creative projects.” The award was presented to the Norwich Historic Preservation Commission at the NAPC’s biennial FORUM conference in Mobile, AL, on July 29, 2016.