March 30, 2007

Jennifer Tanner
Communications Specialist

Charles Harmon Director of University Relations

Zaccari receives Governor's Award for Excellence

ATLANTA - Ronald Zaccari, President of Valdosta State University, received a Governor’s Award for Excellence in Historic Preservation Stewardship during the Department of Natural Resources Board Meeting held Wednesday, March 28 in Atlanta.

According to a letter from W. Ray Luce, Division Director and Deputy State Historic Preservation officer, Zaccari was honored for his leadership in planning for the future growth and development of VSU’s campus and his commissioned Campus Historic Preservation Plan (CHPP) & Related Planning Studies, which was completed in 2006.

Representatives of Lord Aeck Sargent, the firm responsible for conducting the preservation plan, nominated Zaccari based on his leadership and vision during the process.

“Dr. Zaccari fostered a process that was open and honest,” the nominators said. “He is committed to the positive transformation of human life through the opportunities presented to serve as President of Valdosta State University and as representative of the University System of Georgia and the citizens of our state.”

Zaccari emphasized the award represented the collective energies and commitments of many constituent groups who contributed to development of VSU’s CHPP plan, including representatives from Valdosta’s historic neighborhoods, Valdosta City Council, Lord Aeck Sargent, Valdosta State University, and the University System of Georgia.

“The Governor’s Award is a tribute to the Valdosta community and its emphasis on planned growth and the insistence of community leaders to constantly evaluate and protect the relevant history of South Georgia,” said Zaccari. “I am pleased to accept this award on behalf of everyone who supports Valdosta’s rich past and exciting future.”

The CHPP was the institution’s first comprehensive effort to assess historic resources and recommend a framework for their conservation. Overall, it considered VSU’s holdings on both the Main Campus and North Campus, a survey of the adjacent properties within the Valdosta Historic District and historic landscape features.

Several workshops during the planning phase allowed representatives of neighborhoods surrounding the campus, the City of Valdosta and VSU to address concerns. It created an interactive and inclusive process that addressed the university’s needs for growth while preserving the character of the surrounding historic neighborhoods.

The purpose of the Historic Preservation Stewardship awards program is to recognize state employees for outstanding leadership and achievement in historic preservation stewardship of state-owned or administered properties. Future plans include an expansion of the program, as it becomes an incentive for all to become better stewards of Georgia’s historic properties.

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