The outstanding efforts of Alberta’s 'heritage heroes' and the work of local organizations to preserve the province’s rich history were recognized on October 3, 2022.
2022 award recipients
Heritage Conservation Awards
The City of Calgary Calgary’s Historic City Hall Rehabilitation
This project was an extensive and complex rehabilitation of the 1911 Calgary City Hall, a four-storey sandstone building located in downtown Calgary. The Calgary City Hall is designated as a National, Provincial and Municipal Historic Resource. This historic building has been restored to a condition intended to serve Calgary for another 100 years. Work included significant masonry restoration work, reconstructions, clock restoration, roof revitalization, window and door work, along with modern barrier-free accommodations and structural upgrades.
Sandra Hajash’s Duke of Sutherland Bungalow Exterior Restoration
The project is the exterior restoration of the bungalow, a large private residence at the Duke of Sutherland Site Complex near Brooks. The bungalow is a Provincial Historic Resource. The project focuses on the completion of this substantial and most recent phase of a 30-year long conservation program undertaken by owner Sandra Hajash. The 2020-22 conservation program consisted of the restoration of the bungalow’s painted wood clapboard, repair and repainting of primary windows and restoration of a missing north-west facing porch. This is an excellent example of a restoration of a private residence by a dedicated private owner.
Heritage Awareness Awards
Powwow! Ohcîwin the Origins by the Red Deer Museum + Art Gallery
This exhibit features the complete regalia of seven pow-wow dance styles. Working with curators and creators Patrick and Marrisa Mitsuing, the Red Deer Museum and Art Gallery premiered the exhibit in 2020-21. The Mitsuings gathered the origin stories, collaborated with artisans and carefully built the regalia for the exhibition. This project helps bring cultural awareness of powwows and is an excellent example of how museums and art galleries collaborate with local and regional Indigenous communities in telling their stories and cultural practices in a respectful way. The exhibit is available online (https://reddeermuseum.com/powwow-ohciwin-the-origins/) and will be on display at the Musée Heritage Museum in St. Albert from August to November 2022.
Métis Nation of Alberta Region 3 Historical Research by Matt Hiltermann
Matt Hiltermann is a Métis Interpreter, artisan and ethonohistorian and currently works as the Public Historian for Region 3 of the Métis Nation of Alberta. Over the past two years, he has contributed four extensively researched, well-written and engaging articles for the RETROActive blog maintained by the department. The blog is a source of Alberta-specific heritage information and stories. Mr. Hiltermann’s posts have been some of the most popular blog post of the year and have greatly contributed to the understanding and interpretation of Métis heritage in Alberta. His involvement in publishing articles also helped strengthen the relationship between Alberta Arts, Culture and Status of Women and the Métis Nation of Alberta Region 3.
Abandoned Alberta by Joe Chowaniec
The book Abandoned Alberta is a collection of stunning photographs of abandoned buildings across the province by Edmonton photographer Joe Chowaniec. When Mr. Chowaniec took these photos, he found the echoes of the people who once inhabited those structures. The photographs started through his Facebook page and grew into the publication of a book and an exhibit hosted by the Royal Alberta Museum from June 2021 to March 2022. The public response to his work has resulted in the creation of volume 2 to be released in 2022.
Outstanding Achievement Awards
Tofield Historical Society
Formed in 1961, this local historical society collects artifacts and archival documents to preserve the history of Tofield and surrounding areas. It has been located in the Beaverhill Lake Nature Centre/Museum Facility since 1996. The Society has published two local histories and created numerous interpretive displays of Tofield’s history, including one display of artifacts that pays tribute to the First Nations’ history of the area. The society also conducts school tours and visits local schools with their Museum in a Box Program. The society has a strong volunteer Board and continues to be a champion in the preservation of local history.
Bodo Archaeological Society
Formed in 2003, the Bodo Archaeological Society has been championing Alberta’s history through archaeology. The society is one of the six centres of the Archaeological Society of Alberta and consists of local community members from the small communities of Bodo and Provost. For nearly 20 years, the society has been fulfilling its mission of promoting public archaeology, education and the conservation of historical and archaeological resources at the Bodo archaeological sites. The society is best known for delivering extensive public archaeology and educational programs.
Alberta Genealogical Society Volunteers of the Provincial Archives of Alberta
Since 1989, members of the Alberta Genealogical Society (AGS) has been providing ongoing volunteer services to the Provincial Archives of Alberta. The group has evolved over 33 years with people moving, retiring or passing away. This current group of 11 long-time and committed AGS members help to preserve and make accessible materials of interest to those researching family histories. Their thousands of hours of meticulous indexing and rehousing of archival documents have significantly increased access to historical information on Alberta families.
Noreen Easterbrook of Smoky Lake
Ms. Easterbrook has been involved with heritage in Alberta for over 15 years, serving as chairperson of the non-profit organization Smoky Lake County Regional Heritage Board, assisting with large-scale restoration projects, and serving as an advocate with regard to heritage issues within Smoky Lake County. Her accomplishments clearly demonstrate exemplary long-term leadership in the preservation of the local history of Smoky Lake County.
Belinda Crowson of Lethbridge
Ms. Crowson has been involved with heritage in Alberta for over 22 years. Her long list of accomplishments clearly demonstrate exemplary long-term leadership in the preservation and promotion of the history of southern Alberta. Notable achievements include her involvement with the Galt Museum’s education program, her volunteer efforts relating to the Lethbridge Historical Society, her books about Lethbridge history, and her strong advocacy for the value of local history.
Richard de Boer of Calgary
Mr. de Boer has been involved with heritage in Alberta for over 30 years. He began his career as a curator at Calgary's Aerospace Museum/Hangar Flight Museum in 1983, and for decades committed himself to the preservation and interpretation of Alberta’s aviation history. Mr. de Boer is known as a global expert in the WWII Mosquito aircraft. His contributions to the heritage sector have gone well beyond his museum employment, and include extensive voluntary contributions that demonstrate his drive to preserve and restore historic aircraft, and share his wealth of knowledge of Alberta and Canadian aviation history.
Connect with the Program Coordinator:
Heritage Awards Program
Old St. Stephen’s College Building
8820 112 Street
Edmonton, Alberta T6G 2P8
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