National Preservation Conference Runs from Oct 27-30, 2010 in Austin, Texas

Oct 14, 2010, 09:00 ET from National Trust for Historic Preservation

Conference Speakers Include Former First Lady Laura Bush

Many Conference Events are Free and Open to the Public

WASHINGTON, Oct. 14 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The National Preservation Conference—the premier gathering of its kind in the country, attracting nearly 2,000 attendees—will feature speeches by former First Lady Laura Bush and Interior Secretary Ken Salazar, as well as nearly 100 education and field sessions, many of which are free and open to the public. The conference will be held in Austin, TX, from October 27-30, and the National Trust for Historic Preservation is urging local residents to come out and get involved in the many free conference sessions available to the general public. A complete listing of these sessions and activities is available at

"Austin's unique heritage, dynamic neighborhoods and vibrant cultural scene make this an ideal setting from which to explore today's most relevant preservation issues," said Stephanie Meeks, president of the National Trust for Historic Preservation.  "Preservationists from across the country will learn from Austin's numerous preservation success stories, and explore the surrounding Hill Country's rich landscapes. I want to extend a warm welcome to local residents who may be interested in learning more about historic preservation to take advantage of the many conference sessions that are open to the public."  

This year's conference theme, "Next American City, Next American Landscape," spotlights preservation's role in defining the future of our nation's urban and rural communities. Also, the National Preservation Conference—reflecting the organization's commitment to sustainability—will be an official provider of education credits from the U.S. Green Building Council's Certification Institute in addition to credits offered for planners through AICP/APA, and architects through the AIA.

A special new addition to this year's conference is "Austin Unscripted," a social-media based project in which National Trust staff will be asking Austinites to talk about their city—what makes it unique, and how preservation plays a role in the city's vitality.  Three National Trust staffers will spend four days interviewing Austinites at meet-ups all over the city, ranging from Waterloo Records to Torchy's Trailer Park and the HOPE Farmers Market. They will be videotaping, tweeting, blogging and more.  Learn more and get the schedule at

Conference attendees will examine leading-edge topics in the field of historic preservation, including: the role historic preservation plays in sustainable communities and green building; and the growing movement to preserve historic places from the more recent past, including Modernist architecture. In addition to over 100 education and field sessions, the conference will feature a range of special guest speakers, including former First Lady Laura Bush; Interior Secretary Ken Salazar (invited), New Yorker magazine architectural critic Paul Goldberger, and historian and immigration expert Juan Hernandez, the only American to have served in the cabinet of a Mexican president.

Austin was selected as the host city for the 2010 National Preservation Conference because of its diverse cultural heritage, its role as an early leader of preservation initiatives in Texas, and its eclectic mix of preservation success stories—including the nationally recognized South Congress neighborhood.

The National Preservation Conference prides itself on making sure that attendees get out of exhibit halls and conference rooms to learn directly from the host city's preservation experience. Conference attendees will have ample opportunity to explore Austin and nearby communities like Bastrop and San Antonio through a series of field sessions, gaining first-hand insights into the region's efforts to preserve its historic places. A selection of the field sessions includes:

Austin Bike Tour: Saddle up for a bike tour through Austin's history ranging from the Biergarten to Freedman's Town.

Mexicans and Mexican Americans in Downtown Austin Heritage Tour: From Republic Square to East Austin, the tour will visit significant aspects of Austin's extensive Mexican and Mexican-American heritage.

San Antonio's Spanish Culture: Missions to Murals: Tour will focus on San Antonio's world-class collection of Spanish Colonial architecture.

Georgetown Square: An Award-Winning Preservation Story: Attendees will explore the Williamson County Courthouse National Historic District in Georgetown and learn how preservation is used there as a redevelopment catalyst.

Downtown Deco: Participants will discover Austin's surprisingly large collection of Art Deco and Art Moderne architecture.  

Registration is open now and throughout the conference. For more information about the National Preservation Conference and registration fees, visit or call 202-588-6296.

Principal local sponsor of the 2010 National Preservation Conference is the Austin Convention and Visitors Bureau. Major sponsors of the 2010 National Preservation Conference are: Fondren Foundation; HEB and Central Markets; Dealey & David Herndon; Gay & Shannon Ratliff; Bud Light/John and Bobbie Nau; and the Texas Historical Commission. The conference's Honorary Chair is Mrs. Laura W. Bush. Conference Co-Chairs are Dealey Herndon and Gay Ratliff.

The National Trust for Historic Preservation ( is a non-profit membership organization bringing people together to protect, enhance and enjoy the places that matter to them. By saving the places where great moments from history – and the important moments of everyday life – took place, the National Trust for Historic Preservation helps revitalize neighborhoods and communities, spark economic development and promote environmental sustainability. With headquarters in Washington, DC, eight regional and field offices, 29 historic sites, and partner organizations in 50 states, territories, and the District of Columbia, the National Trust for Historic Preservation provides leadership, education, advocacy and resources to a national network of people, organizations and local communities committed to saving places, connecting us to our history and collectively shaping the future of America's stories.

Media registration for the conference is free. For more information or to receive a full conference program, members of the media can contact the National Trust Communications Office at 202-588-6141 or email

SOURCE National Trust for Historic Preservation