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Civil War Trust

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For Immediate Release: 11/17/11

John L. Nau III Receives Top Award for Historic Preservation

Trust Chairman Emeritus Recognized by American Academy for Park and Recreation Administration

Houston resident John L. Nau III, prominent citizen advocate for historic preservation and land conservation, was awarded the prestigious Cornelius Armory Pugsley Medal from the American Academy for Park and Recreation Administration (AAPRA).

Nau was honored at the annual AAPRA dinner in Atlanta this month for a lifetime of outstanding work. Vern J. Hartenburg, AAPRA Pugsley Committee Chair, said, "The Pugsley Medal is recognized as America's distinguished acknowledgement of significant leadership in parks and open space conservation."

Nau’s name became synonymous with the protection of our nation’s historic landmarks shortly after he was appointed Chairman of the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation (ACHP) by President George W. Bush. Nau served as chairman from 2001 to 2010, leading efforts to create a White House initiative, Preserve America, a program which recognizes and supports local governments and private sector organizations in their efforts to increase heritage conservation and landmark visitation.

Nau was also recognized for his leadership nationally in the protection of our Civil War lands. Specifically, the Civil War Trust during Nau’s Chairmanship saved 4,500 acres of key land at 35 high-priority Civil War battlefields in nine states.  With Nau’s expertise and guidance, the Trust effectively leveraged its resources by a factor of 10:1.

Nau Pugsley MedalNau was also recognized for his work on the board of the National Park Foundation, an organization which benefits National Parks. Furthermore, his outstanding leadership as chairman of the Texas Historical Commission, 1997-2009, contributed to his receiving the Pugsley Award.

Nau joins a distinguished list of Pugsley Medal winners, including Stephen Mather, the founder and first director of the National Park Service; Landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted, Jr.; Gilbert Grosvenor, former chairman of the National Geographic Society; two former Secretaries of the Interior, Bruce Babbitt and Stuart Udall; philanthropist Laurence Rockefeller; First Lady Lady Bird Johnson, and Eunice Kennedy Shriver.

Former National Park Service Director Fran Mainella, in presenting the award to Mr. Nau, said, “John’s leadership and influence in the protection of America’s valued cultural and historic resources represents a legacy recognized as “monumental” as the historic landmarks themselves.” 

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