DENVER, Colo. (January 30, 2020) — Today, History Colorado announced the start of a new Rocky Mountain Center for Preservation (RMCP)—a dynamic preservation education center, headquartered in Leadville at the Healy House Museum & Dexter Cabin. The Center will create and oversee a preservation education program open to the general public, and serve as a resource for preservation information and training to homeowners, business owners, developers, students, and interested novices across the state and region.
“History Colorado is thrilled to be launching this incredibly exciting project. To strengthen our ability to serve as a resource to communities across Colorado, we want to proactively give them the skills and expertise to rehabilitate, renovate and repair to the highest standards,” said Dawn DiPrince, Chief Operations Officer at History Colorado. “Ensuring that the next generation of tradespeople are ready to meet the demands and that future homeowners understand the benefits of saving places, is a win-win for the entire state.”
The new RMCP will incrementally grow its curriculum over the coming months, crafting specific education programs at the Healy House that serve multiple audiences, including Lake County residents in historic homes; business owners and developers, and non-profit groups and museums engaged in preservation work, as well as other locations throughout the state.
These hands-on workshops will be held in collaboration with experts from across the state in specific trades skills, and will also include entrepreneurship training for small-business owners, and engagement with commercial developers and real estate agents on the benefits of saving historic places. There are also plans to develop youth-focused, multi-day education programs that couple preservation education with housing, meals, and other meaningful experiences to young people for several weeks each summer.
"Our dual goals for this center are to spark awareness and spur economic development,” said Janell Keyser, Director of the Rocky Mountain Center for Preservation. “The future of preservation is only as strong as its future workforce and there is a growing shortage of qualified tradespeople. As skilled historic preservation tradespeople retire, we have a unique opportunity to help build a specialized and well-paid workforce. This will increase our economic impact across the state, but particularly in mountain and rural communities.”
Much of the programming will be developed in strategic partnership with professionals in historic preservation, residential real estate, commercial development, educators and other nonprofits, with a goal towards helping to spur rural economic development
History Colorado, the state agency leading the this initiative, invites interested communities, educators, professionals, as well as current and former tradespoeple across the state to collaborate together to create space and events for hands-on learning.
About History Colorado
Inclusive, values-driven, and intentional, History Colorado has become a force for finding new ways to serve people in Colorado. In 2018 History Colorado provided programs to more than 18,000 students in their own schools, and assisted more than 40 schools with bus funds, to expand efforts that now serve more than 85,000 students annually. Its all-day Hands-On History program at El Pueblo History Museum responds to the four-day school week that is now administered by 61% of Colorado school districts.
History Colorado’s mission is to create a better future for Colorado by inspiring wonder in our past. We serve as the state’s memory, preserving and sharing the places, stories, and material culture of Colorado through educational programs, historic preservation grants, collecting, outreach to Colorado communities, the History Colorado Center and Stephen H. Hart Research Center in Denver, and nine other museums and historic attractions statewide. Visit HistoryColorado.org, or call 303-HISTORY, for more information.