Summary of a Memorandum of Understanding between

Preservation Alliance of Virginia and APVA Preservation Virginia

March 29, 2004

APVA Preservation Virginia and the Preservation Alliance of Virginia have initiated a formal process to explore joining forces of the two statewide preservation organizations to form a single, unified voice to promote preservation across the Commonwealth. The National Trust has facilitated the yearlong process.

The board members of the APVA Preservation Virginia and the PAV believe that preservation interests in Virginia can be served best by a multi-dimensional organization that honors the traditions, members, and aspirations of both organizations. Strong alliances, focus, and increased resources will pave the way for a powerful voice for preservation as an effective economic, educational, cultural, and growth engine for communities large and small, urban and rural.

For Virginia, this will mean that as a statewide organization, APVA Preservation Virginia will maintain its current programs, including, but not limited to, historic property management, heritage tourism, collection management, historical and archaeological research, revolving fund activities, publications, technical assistance, public educational programs, and service to members, the general public, and special audiences. In addition, APVA Preservation Virginia will expand to dedicate the financial, human, and technical resources necessary to carry out the programs and activities previously undertaken by the PAV, including–but not limited to–the annual statewide conference, preservation awards, the endangered historic properties and landscapes listing, support of a favorable legislative agenda for preservation interests in Virginia, and educational and technical support of local preservation groups throughout the State.

The success of this new dynamic thrust will be measured by activities during the next three years as the consolidated structure is fully realized. The success will only come with the full participation of individuals and organizational members that embrace this vision for Virginia.

Request for Your Advice. In Virginia, a state arguably the richest in the nation in history and tradition, the preservation, protection, and promotion of these structures and sites are imperative. After reading this announcement, please send us your thoughts, questions, and concerns. We plan to solicit your advice during the upcoming fundraising workshops co-hosted by the APVA Preservation Virginia, the PAV, the DHR, and the National Trust through a formal survey of groups and at meetings that we will hold throughout the Commonwealth. Your opinions are an important component in our combined success.

The steps and actions outlined below are a guide, but input is needed from individuals and members of local and regional organizations to ensure our success.

Steps Toward Consolidation. The boards of APVA Preservation Virginia and the PAV each have agreed in principle to a “Memorandum of Understanding” that outlines steps toward consolidating their activities and functions, including the following:

  1. The APVA Preservation Virginia’s board will be expanded to include the addition of five (5) current or past directors of the PAV.
  2. The Executive Committee of the APVA Preservation Virginia’s board will include a vice president’s position filled by one of the new trustees nominated by the PAV and elected to the APVA Preservation Virginia’s board.
  3. APVA Preservation Virginia will undertake to use its best efforts to ensure that former PAV directors, members, member organizations, and volunteers will have the opportunity to become involved in APVA Preservation Virginia through service on committees or involvement as a volunteer in activities, programs, properties, special events, etc.
  4. The parties envision that APVA Preservation Virginia will help create, organize, and fund as a member organization. It will serve as coordinator of a proposed 501(c)(4) organization to lobby for historic preservation and natural resource conservation in the Virginia General Assembly and as called for on behalf of the member organizations that would make up this 501(c)(4) lobbying organization.

In addition, APVA Preservation Virginia will restructure its Legislative Action Committee into an Advocacy Committee of the board that will serve three purposes:

e.The Committee will serve as the liaison between APVA Preservation Virginia and the 501(c)(4) lobbying organization.

f.The Advocacy Committee will serve the needs of APVA Preservation Virginia and its mission; and

g.The Advocacy Committee will advocate for Virginia laws and public policies that encourage historic preservation and open space conservation both within and outside of the context of the 501(c)(4) organization.

To accomplish these goals, APVA Preservation Virginia, through a cooperative structure with other organizations and where resources are available, will dedicate the financial, human, and technical resources necessary to develop and implement a public policy agenda that will be proactive and responsive to the statewide, regional, and local concerns of the preservation movement. It will develop a program of events and public education to promote the mission of APVA Preservation Virginia.

Much of the success of the PAV was in large part due to the support and participation of organizational members. APVA Preservation Virginia will endeavor to serve the interests of its local- and regional-member historic preservation organizations by establishing a specific category of membership with commensurate benefits for these organizations and their members. Current memberships in PAV will be honored until their renewal dates.

Further, APVA Preservation Virginia will serve and support the interests of its organizational members through active recruitment; regular statewide and regional meetings; support services, training, educational programming, and technical assistance; support for long-range land-use planning; and encouragement of a grassroots advocacy network linked to central information services.

For more than one hundred years, APVA Preservation Virginia, the oldest statewide preservation organization in the nation, has been well served by its Branches across the Commonwealth. The Branches serve as the nucleus of the President’s Council and are represented by four Regional Trustees. We will be studying this structure to find ways that it might serve organizational members and, at the same time, maintain the needed communications within the Branch system. Wherever possible, member organizations and Branches will exchange liaisons to promote local cooperation.

Immediate Steps. Currently, a committee–with board representation from both organizations and staff assistance–is devising a plan to evaluate the needs of members and member organizations. A strategic plan with staffing needs, identification of available resources, and goals will be created as a benchmark to measure success during the next three years.