Historic Albany Foundation is a long-standing local organization that works hard to save Albany's most important buildings. We spoke with Historic Albany's Executive Director, Susan Holland, to learn more:
How long have you been involved with Historic Albany?
Almost 8 years as the Executive Director.
What is your role with Historic Albany? What does a typical day look like?
I run Historic Albany Foundation which is a nonprofit, membership, historic preservation organization. A typical day? Usually borderline insanity! As I like to say, I can be in City Hall meeting with the Mayor on an issue and dressed in a suit and heels and then, in a building in the worst condition where I need to wear steel-toed boots. All days are different but very interesting.
What is Historic Albany's mission?
HAF preserves and protects buildings that have architectural, historic or civic value, by providing technical assistance, education, and advocacy.
Can you tell me about a project that is one of Historic Albany's big success stories?
In 2003, we were given St. Joe’s (former St. Joseph's Church) by the City of Albany to stabilize it, as it was threatened with collapse. $755,000 and ten years later, we have a stable building and it’s ready for its next use.
EDITOR'S NOTE Historic Albany recently turned St. Joe's back over to the city and acquired the Van Ostrande-Radliff House (the oldest building in Albany). We're excited to see what they're able to do with this incredible piece of Albany history!
What is your favorite thing about the city of Albany?
I can’t believe how many historic buildings there actually are and the beauty inside most.
What is your vision for Albany moving forward?
Historic preservation is really the basis to look to the future and to reuse our building fabric. We have a lot of opportunities with these buildings – reuse, sustainable and in a walkable footprint. Great things will happen soon (editor's note: emphasis is ours).
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