Community Advocacy

Community Advocacy

If you care about your community and want to become an effective advocate for historic preservation, don't go it alone. Be prepared to inform, energize, and enlist others to the cause.


Communities, like people, have their own identities and personalities. Chances are, your community arose as either a courthouse town, a railroad town, a fishing village, a port city, a farming community, a college town, a commercial center, a street car suburb, a mining or manufacturing town, a rural crossroads hamlet-or took shape through some other character-defining impetus rooted in history.


Historic preservation means recognizing your community's legacy and maintaining the important physical evidence that helps define your community's historic character. Only through well informed, persevering, concerted efforts are historic buildings, landscapes, neighborhoods, and downtowns maintained and renewed. It takes a community to save a community!


Preservation happens when local communities, neighborhoods, and individual property owners want it to happen. Preservation advocacy begins with promoting citizen awareness of a community's history; it grows by stimulating private initiative, and it succeeds by encouraging community action and by using existing preservation tools and incentives at every level.


Virginia communities that are committed to putting their historic resources to work for sustainable development are healthier and richer for it. Good stewardship produces substantial environmental, economic, educational and civic benefits for present and future generations.

Stay up-to-date on federal legislative issues pertaining to Historic Preservation at the National Trust fo Historic Preservation's Website

The Successful Advocate

The successful preservation advocate must know the landscape of the effort, including how to contact, inform and enlist groups already existing who may be natural allies. This often involves being already active with them through membership, subscriptions or participation in events and programs even before the immediate issue of concern arises. Local, regional statewide and even national organizations can help, or offer guidance, but it is those most closely connected to the local situation that can make the most difference.

Advocacy FACT:

House and Senate bills (at the federal and state levels) are introduced each legislative session. Stay on top of the latest legislative actions that would impact historic preservation by clicking here.