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Historic Denver is one of only two organizations allowed to host an event in the elegant lobby of the historic Brown Palace Hotel and Spa.

45th Annual Dinner & Awards Ceremony

Historic Denver's 45th Annual Dinner and Awards Ceremony will be held on Wednesday, October 28, 2015 at the Brown Palace Hotel & Spa.  For the forty-fifth year, Historic Denver gathered 400 of the city’s civic and business leaders, design professionals, respected craftsmen and local advocates to celebrate the role preservation plays in making Denver a world class city.

Historic Denver’s Annual Dinner & Awards Program honors a diverse set of individuals and projects that reflect an organic spirit, a natural evolution of an old place into something fitting and new. Three individual awards, the Molly Brown Award, the Ann Love Award and the Keystone Award will be presented along with five projects earning Community Preservation Awards.

Historic Denver: Community Preservation Awards 2015 from Havey Productions on Vimeo.


The 2015 Award Winners:

Keystone Award
The Keystone Award honors people who have made significant contributions over their lifetime to historic preservation in Denver.

Barb Pahl
Western Field Operations, National Trust for Historic Preservation

Since joining the Trust, Ms. Pahl has played a key role in the development of the National Trust BARN AGAIN! Program, the Heritage Tourism Program, the initiative to save historic neighborhood schools, the Public Lands Initiative and Explore Colorado, a partnership with KUSA 9NEWS in Denver to promote heritage tourism in Colorado. She led the Trust’s effort to save Virginia and Nevada City, Montana, Travelers Rest, and to keep the historic red buses in Glacier National Park. For these projects and other preservation work in Montana, Ms. Pahl received the Governor’s Historic Preservation Award in 2005. In 2007, Ms Pahl received the Dana Crawford Award in recognition of her contributions towards saving Colorado’s built heritage.

During her time at the National Trust, Ms. Pahl has been a leading advocate for the preservation of historic places in our national parks. Under her leadership, the Trust led the campaign to save the McGraw Ranch in Rocky Mountain National Park and has been a leading national advocate for the preservation of historic lodges, chalets, transportation vehicles, and the Going to the Sun Road in Glacier National Park. She is currently worked with Grand Teton National Park to convert the historic White Grass Dude Ranch into the Western Center for Historic Preservation where park employees, contractors, volunteers, and students can learn how to rehabilitate and reuse historic rustic structures.

Before coming to the Trust, Pahl was Curator of Material Culture with the Colorado Historical Society where she developed a major exhibition on mining. She also worked for the Colorado SHPO and the National Park Service’s National Register of Historic Places and Historic Engineering Record.

Ann Love Award
The Ann Love Award was established in 1997 to honor individuals who may not consider themselves traditional preservationists but have shown initiative, creativity, and commitment in preserving the history, culture and architecture of Denver. The award is named for Ann Love, wife of Colorado Governor John Love. Mrs. Love was instrumental in saving the Molly Brown House and establishing Historic Denver but never considered herself a preservationist. She had remarkable determination and garnered support for projects she felt were essential to making Colorado and Denver one of the country’s best places.

Jim Havey 
Havey Productions

Jim Havey grew up on Chicago’s “South Side,” eventually surviving 16 years of Catholic education with a degree in Political Science and Sociology from St. Ambrose College in Davenport, IA. Continuing west to Denver, Jim worked with troubled youth for seven years while developing a passion for photography and multi-image production into a new career with Havey Productions starting in 1979.

Havey ultimately developed a specialty as a documentarian, often creating works with cultural heritage at heart. His films on Colfax Avenue, Downtown Denver, Molly Brown, and Union Station have helped thousands connect to the stories that make Denver unique, heightening interest and awareness in historic preservation. Havey has also tackled state-wide issues, most recently with a 90-minute film on the history of water in Colorado. Often raising the funds himself or partnering with a non-profit, Havey has ensured that these films are accessible to schools across the state and through public television. Additionally, Havey has produced Historic Denver’s Annual Awards Video for over a decade, inspiring Denver’s civic leaders with poignant clips about preservation projects that make our City great. Havey unique style, beautiful photography, and personal interest make his films special.

Molly Brown Award
The Molly Brown Award was created to honor women who live in Margaret “Molly” Brown’s spirit today by devoting many years to civic life in all its forms, actively engaging themselves in politics, philanthropy, arts and cultural endeavors and historic preservation as Mrs. Brown did. Each year this award will honor a woman who demonstrates this same level of passion about the world and who is willing to take the lead, speak her mind and make Denver a stronger community for everyone.

Cleo Parker Robinson
Cleo Parker Robinson Dance

Cleo Parker-Robinson is the executive artistic director and choreographer of the Cleo Parker Robinson Dance Ensemble. Robinson began teaching dance at the University of Colorado at the age of fifteen. She graduated from the Colorado Women's College (now Denver University), having focused on dance, education and psychology. She studied with legendary dancer and humanitarian Katherine Dunham and then founded her own company in 1970. The mission of this ensemble is to foster appreciation, access and the development of new audiences for dance. Cleo Parker Robinson Dance had taken over the historic but vacant Shorter A.M.E. Church building in downtown Denver. Skeptics had doubted Robinson’s ability to finance the renovation of the 24,000-square-foot hulk, but Robinson, a fundraising dynamo as comfortable talking with CEOs as with gang members, raised the money, and the company took up residence in the church in 1987.

Robinson attempts to educate audiences about the rich heritage and ancestral gifts on which this predominately African American ensemble draws through a year-round dance school, an international summer dance institute and national and international performances. Robinson also seeks to ensure the arts are carried on by future generations. A program called Project Self-Discovery (PSD) demonstrates her commitment to youth outreach. PSD provides the arts to at-risk Denver youth as an alternative to gang activity, substance abuse and other tragic possibilities.

Her long record of community involvement led to her appointment in 1999 to the National Council on the Arts, an advisory body reporting to the National Endowment for the Arts. Robinson and her dancers have toured the world, and the turn of the century saw her leading the company into artistic exchanges with dance ensembles in other countries: Cleo Parker Robinson Dance entered into a three-year exchange with choreographer Jelon Vieira’s DanceBrazil, and the company also worked with Masai dancers in Kenya. More than any other dance figure, perhaps, Cleo Parker Robinson has embodied the spirit of social idealism in dance.

Community Preservation Awards
The Community Preservation Awards are given annually to a handful of projects, institutions and individuals that have made an exceptional contribution to the preservation of Denver’s heritage. These projects exemplify high quality restoration, the careful consideration of the city’s historic fabric and a commitment to community. The winners of these awards are essential to Historic Denver’s mission and the organization takes great pride in recognizing those who assist us in enhancing Denver’s built environment. Here is a look at the best in adaptive reuse projects that are making their mark on Denver’s built environment.

Airedale- Ophelia’s Electric Soapbox / Hostel Fish

Paul Tamburello, Generator Development

The 1899 Kopper’s Hotel and Saloon is one of the few surviving representatives of Denver’s early working class hotels and ethnic saloons. German immigrant Albert Kopper built the three-story building as a replacement for his successful saloon at the same location. Architect Frederick Carl Eberely designed the hotel / saloon in a style typical of late Victorian-era commercial architecture, distinguishing its facade with a pair of two-story bay windows.

The building is owned by Generator Development (led by Paul Tamburello), the development company behind several wildly successful adaptive reuse projects which now hold: Root Down restaurant, Linger, and the GrowHaus. For the Airedale building, they worked to keep many of the original elements of the building during the renovation. The first floor is home to Ophelia’s Electric Soapbox, the newest restaurant by Justin Cucci (Root Down, Linger), while the top two floors are dedicated to the newly-opened Hostel Fish. Hostel Fish will have 65 twin beds in nine rooms. There will also be two private rooms priced around $150 per night and lots of community areas including a reading room, social area with a bar and small kitchen and an alcove with an iPad for guests. Owner Chad Fish emphasized their commitment to honoring the building’s past, while updating it for modern guests. “We're trying to keep as much of the original beauty as we can," he said. One of the key features of the building is a massive skylight. Everyone involved in the project worked to refurbish the historic element. "We actually put in this support to help hold the walls and the structures and everything," Fish said.

Brown Palace Hotel and Spa

The Brown Palace Hotel, designed by notable Denver architect, Frank Edbrooke, has been a Denver icon since its opening in 1892. Situated on a triangular lot at the intersection of 17th and Broadway, it represents Denver’s evolution as a city, from railroad junction to bustling city in its own right. The hotels many famous guests include Margaret Brown, the Beatles, and every president since Teddy Roosevelt.

In 2013, the Brown Palace Hotel & Spa began a three-year, $10.5 million renovation project, which included a $3 million restoration of the building's sandstone façade. This extensive undertaking included replacing some of the stone work for the first time since the Brown Palace opened in 1892.“It really brings the Brown Palace to a new level,” Mark Shine, director of sales and marketing, said. “We’re a historic hotel and a Denver icon ... But what we want to do is make us more appealing to different demographics.” Managing director of the hotel, Marcel Pitton, noted that the restoration [is] not going to enhance a guest's stay. It's more about preservation."

Denver-based Building Restoration Specialties led the restoration, tackling one side of the triangle-shaped building each year — replacing mortar joints, small areas of damaged stone and repairing flashings.

The stone that the company used to replace damaged areas of the facade is hand-carved, custom-ordered Utah sandstone. But the craftsmanship, character and materials used in old buildings still outshines private construction going on in Denver today, which encourage "disposable" buildings.

Epworth Building

Larry Nelson / 620 Corp / Sprung Construction

In the 1890s, Methodist Deaconess Melissa Briggs opened the Woman’s Home Missionary Society in Colorado, who ‘planted’ the Epworth Mission church in the Curtis Park neighborhood. Epworth was poised to serve the residents who lived in the neighborhood and worked in the nearby factories and smelters. In 1915, the Epworth Institutional Church was built at 31st and Lawrence, which the congregation occupied until 1979. This new structure combined Italianate and Classical Revival styles to create a stately building. Today it still stands out among the rows of brick bungalows and warehouses.

The building remained abandoned until 2013, when local developer (and Historic Denver board member) Larry Nelson of 620 Corp purchased the building. Nelson has spent the last two years renovating the building, which will house a restaurant and office space. The project transformed the church's 4,500-square-foot sanctuary into a space to house a restaurant. The arched, stained-glass windows have been restored and so will the octagon-shaped glass dome in the sanctuary's 30-foot ceiling. Another 9,000 square feet in the three-story building is being renovated for office space. Each floor will be leased out separately.

414 Fourteenth on the Ambassador

Hyder Construction

This building at 14th and Tremont was constructed in 1923 to serve as the Denver Public School’s Administration Building. It served as the DPS Admin building until the mid-1970s. In 1994, the Denver Art Museum bought the building from the city. At this time, it was designed a local historic landmark. The Art Museum used the building to house their administration offices until 2013. Hyder Construction bought the building with a focus on renovating it and leasing it as office space. Tom McLagan, president of Hyder Construction said the company aimed to “blend architectural detailing from the 1920s with contemporary architectural elements to create an exceptional office workspace in downtown Denver”. This blending also included the construction of an addition off the back of the building, which gave the space an extra 6,000 square feet. Hyder Construction also refurbished the lower level of the building, providing a common area, bike storage and showers for commuters.

Centennial Hall (Formerly Treat Hall)

Johnson & Wales

The Colorado Women’s College was established on land donated by Governor Job Copper in the fall of 1888, and aimed to become the “Vassar of the West”. The first building on the campus was Treat Hall, which began construction in 1890 and was only finished in 1909 due to financial constraints. In 1908, Jay P. Treat was named the first president of the Women’s College, whose emphasis was to be on “the importance of womanhood, wifehood, and motherhood”. In 1909, “Old Main” was completed, and the campus welcomed its first class of 59 students that fall. As the college grew, Treat Hall grew with it. It received its first addition in 1916, and a later proposed addition became the free-standing Foote Hall. In 1930, Old Main was renamed Treat Hall in honor of President Treat. After the Colorado Women’s College merged with the University of Denver in 1982 Treat Hall became a law school and music conservancy.

Presently the building sits at the heart of the Johnson and Wales campus in Denver. In 2014, Johnson & Wales University launched a $30 million renovation of its Denver campus with plans to turn a century-old building that has been vacant for 32 years into a central location for Student Affairs, staff and faculty offices, classrooms, an auditorium and a café.

A Special Thank You to our 2015 Sponsors:

Gold Sponsors 

Building Restoration Specialties, Inc.

Bronze Sponsors
Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck
Hein & Associates
History Colorado
Holland & Hart
Kirkpatrick Bank & Sprung Construction
Larry Nelson & Ruth Falkenberg
Lowe, Fell, Skogg, LLC
Otten Johnson Robinson Neff & Ragonetti

2015 Annual Dinner Committee

Event Chairs:
Jeff Hermanson and Darrin Revious

Committee Members:
Jonathan Bush
Dee Chiragisi
Dana Crawford
Walter Isenberg
David Leuthold
Chad McWhinney
Bill Saslow
Karen Zeile

Past Awards Programs

Each year at our Annual Dinner Historic Denver awards three individual acheivement awards and several awards for deserving community preservation projects. With more than 40 years of history the honorees are now an impressive group of civic leaders. To learn more about past winners watch the awards videos from the last five years!

2014 Annual Dinner & Awards: October 29, 2014

Historic Denver's 44th Annual Dinner and Awards Ceremony was held on Wednesday, October 29, 2014 at the Brown Palace Hotel & Spa. For the forty-fourth year Historic Denver gathered 400 of the city’s civic and business leaders, design professionals, respected craftsmen and local advocates to celebrate the role preservation plays in making Denver a world class city.

2013 Annual Dinner & Awards: October 28, 2013

Wednesday, October 23, 2013 Brown Palace Hotel and Spa Preservation is progress, and the 2013 Historic Denver Annual Dinner & Awards Program highlighted the innovative collaborations, creative solutions and cutting-edge thinking of those who invest in the past as we build for the future. For the forty-third year Historic Denver gathered 400 of the city’s civic and business leaders, design professionals, respected craftsmen and local advocates to celebrate the people and projects that made preservation possible this year.

Historic Denver: Community Preservation Awards 2013 from Havey Productions on Vimeo.


2012 Annual Dinner & Awards: October 30, 2012

Honorees: Ann Love Award, Bob & Suzanne Fanch; Molly Brown Award, Anna Jones; Keystone Award, Spectrum General Contracting; Community Preservation Awards: Marczyk's Fine Foods, Beth haMedrosh Hagodol – Church in the City, Colorado Realty Source at 1225 Logan, Denver City & County Building, National Trust for Historic Preservation's Emerson School.

Historic Denver: Community Preservation Awards 2012 from Havey Productions on Vimeo.

2011 Annual Dinner and Awards, November 2, 2011

The 2011 community preservation award winners included Bromwell Elementary for outstanding architecture and preservation education, those who have cared for and maintained the Daniels & Fisher Tower, Denver Water for the stewardship and sensitive addition at the Einfeldt Pump Station, Shirley Kenneally for her efforts to protect her home, the Mary Holland House, and SlaterPaull Architects for the sustainable conversion and restoration of Engine House No. 5 at 19th and Blake.

Four individuals were acknowledged for their contributions to preservation. Larry D. Williams will receive the Ann Love Award. The late Councilwoman Carla Madison was the recipient of the Molly Brown Award, created to honor a woman who demonstrates Margaret Brown’s commitment to community. The Keystone Award, given for lifetime achievement in historic preservation, was awarded to Lane & Ellen Ittelson.

Historic Denver: Community Preservation Awards 2011 from Havey Productions on Vimeo.

2010 Awards Video, Havey Productions:

Honorees: Keystone Award: Don & Carolyn Etter, Molly Brown Award: Susan Barnes-Gelt, Ann Love Award: Stephen Leonard.  Community Preservation Awards: Curtis Park Neighbors, Allen M. Ghost Historic District, Cornwall Apartments, Sage Building, 16th Street Mall Steering Committee.

Historic Denver Awards 2010 from Havey Productions on Vimeo.

2009 Awards Video, By Havey Productions

Honorees: Keystone Award: Peter Dominick, Molly Brown Award: Georgi Contiguglia, Ann Love Award: Mayor John Hickenlooper.  Community Preservation Awards: Aromor Apartments, Clayton Campus, Rocky Mountain Seed Company, Dry Ice Factory, Wazee Exhange.

Historic Denver Community Preservation Awards 2009 from Havey Productions on Vimeo.

2008 Awards Video by Havey Productions

Honorees: Keystone Award: Barbara & Dennis Baldwin, Molly Brown Award: Mary Voelz Chandler, Ann Love Award: Michael Henry.  Community Preservation Awards: Rock Island Building, American Woodman’s Life Building, Old San Raphael Neighborhood Association

Historic Denver: Annual Awards 2008 from Havey Productions on Vimeo.

2007 Awards Video, by Havey Productions

Honorees: Molly Brown Award: Ellen Fisher, Ann Love Award: Walter Isenberg.  Community Preservation Awards: Friends of Washington Park School, Historic Doyle Benton House, Landmark Preservation Commission of the City & County of Denver, Olinger Mortuary.

Historic Denver: Annual Awards 2007 from Havey Productions on Vimeo.

2006 Awards Video, by Havey Productions

Honorees: Molly Brown Award: Councilwoman Jeanne Robb, Ann Love Award: Joyce Meskis.  Community Preservation Awards: Project: Hughes/Brody Home, Colorado Colfax Marathon, Historic Bauer Building, Denver area Episcopal Church, Lowenstein Theater.

Historic Denver: Annual Awards 2006 from Havey Productions on Vimeo.