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Kentucky Heritage Council
34th Annual Ida Lee Willis Memorial Foundation Preservation Awards to be presented today

Press Release Date:  Thursday, May 31, 2012  
Revision Date:  Friday, June 01, 2012 
Contact Information:  Diane Comer
(502) 564-7005 Ext. 120

NOTE: Information is embargoed for release until 2 p.m. Thursday, May 31.  Attendance at the ceremony is by invitation, but open to the media.

Presentation of the 34th Annual Ida Lee Willis Memorial Foundation Preservation Awards, sponsored by the Ida Lee Willis Memorial Foundation and presented in partnership with the Kentucky Heritage Council/State Historic Preservation Office

2 p.m. Thursday, May 31, Governor’s Executive Mansion, Frankfort

Ida Lee Willis Memorial Preservation Awards are presented each May, in observance of National Historic Preservation Month, and recognize those who have demonstrated an understanding of and appreciation for the value of preserving and reusing Kentucky’s historic and prehistoric resources, whether through the rehabilitation of an important structure or community resource or through a lifetime commitment to encouraging and promoting historic preservation.  The awards are named for the late First Lady Ida Lee Willis, who was appointed first executive director of the Kentucky Heritage Commission (now the Kentucky Heritage Council) in 1966.

The Ida Lee Willis Memorial Award is presented to the individual who has demonstrated outstanding dedication to the cause of historic preservation in the Commonwealth.  The 2012 recipient is Richard T. Jett, of Louisville, retiring Metro Louisville Historic Preservation Officer, for his career of service to the city and Commonwealth.  In this position Jett has served as lead staff for the Historic Landmarks and Preservation Districts Commission, demonstrated leadership as an administrator and researcher, and built key alliances and partnerships among diverse groups of constituents.

Preservation Project Awards recognize outstanding examples of restoration or rehabilitation of historic buildings, or other types of projects that have had a positive impact on Kentucky’s built environment.  2012 recipients will be:

  • 120, 225 and 227 South Main Street, Harrodsburg, and owners Tim Peters and Lois Mateus Peters, for their commitment to preservation and the exemplary work they have done rehabilitating three buildings within a historic Main Street district in their hometown
  • Thomas Edison School Apartments, Covington, rehabilitated by AU Associates Inc., of Lexington, for rehabilitating a 1939 Works Progress Administration school into affordable housing and preserving its original Art Deco charm and historic features both inside and out
  • Whiskey Row Lofts: Trademart Building and Hamilton Brothers Warehouse, Louisville, a rehabilitation project led by Bill Weyland of CITY Properties Group and siblings Valle and Stephen Jones of Whiskey Row Owner LLC, for creating a vanguard, mixed-use development that is serving as a model of what similar projects – and other buildings on this block – have the potential to become 

Service to Preservation Awards honor those who have furthered historic preservation activities or have had a positive impact in their communities, including individuals, organizations, public officials, financial institutions, news media, and/or volunteers.  2012 recipients will be:

  • The Cropper Family, South Portsmouth – Nita and her children Dwight, William Jr. and Gail Swick, and their ancestors – who have lived at the Forest Home Farm since the late 1700s, for their diligent commitment to preserving the farm and its many significant architectural and historic resources
  • Alberta Moynahan, Danville, assistant director of the McDowell House Museum, for her many roles in three decades of continuing service and for her passion relaying the history of Dr. Ephraim McDowell and his house to thousands of students and visitors
  • "Historic Preservation: Saving Place" video, produced by historic preservation staff of the cities of Bellevue and Covington, for its effectiveness as a teaching tool to educate northern Kentucky residents, business owners and others about the benefits of preservation and carrying this message throughout the state

For more information about recipients or projects, contact Diane Comer, 502-564-7005, ext. 120 or email

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An agency of the Kentucky Tourism, Arts and Heritage Cabinet, the Kentucky Heritage Council/State Historic Preservation Office is responsible for the identification, protection and preservation of archaeological resources and historic buildings, sites and cultural resources throughout the Commonwealth, in partnership with other state and federal agencies, local communities and interested citizens. This mission is integral to making communities more livable and has a far-ranging impact on issues as diverse as economic development, jobs creation, affordable housing, tourism, community revitalization, environmental conservation and quality of life.



Richard Jett receives the Memorial Award from Mrs. Sally Willis Meigs

Richard Jett receives the Memorial Award from Mrs. Sally Willis Meigs


Last Updated 6/1/2012