For Immediate Release: 03/04/11
Outstanding Georgia Battlefield Advocates Honored by National Historic Preservation Group
Civil War Trust recognizes Georgia champions of battlefield preservation, education
(Savannah, Ga.) – During a ceremony this morning at the Hilton Savannah DeSoto hotel, the Civil War Trust, a national battlefield preservation organization, recognized three outstanding Georgia history advocates with Chairman’s Awards for Achievement. The awards, presented by Trust Chairman John L. Nau, III, honored Georgia Battlefields Association president Charlie Crawford, Fort McAllister interpretive ranger Talley Kirkland and Rossville history teacher Robert Stinson.
According to Nau, the recipients are among the Trust’s most valuable partners in protecting and interpreting significant Civil War sites. “These three men have made tremendous personal contributions to historic preservation and education. Reflecting on the scope and success of their efforts it is only appropriate to call each a hero for our cause. They have gone above and beyond the call of duty in their positions in ways that are truly inspirational.”
As president of the Georgia Battlefields Association and editor of its monthly newsletter, Charlie Crawford is an indispensible source of information on all aspects of the preservation movement in the state. A Vietnam veteran who retired from the Air Force in 1995 as a colonel, Crawford is a lifetime member of the Military Officers Association of America. Although he is the Trust’s third largest private contributor in Georgia, he frequently attends its events in the role of volunteer, working long hours alongside the staff, as opposed to major donor.
Talley Kirkland, an interpretive ranger at Fort McAllister Historic State Park, has made a career of bringing the history of Georgia’s coastal defenses alive for visitors. After earning a degree in archaeology and anthropology and serving in the U.S. Navy, he joined the staff of Georgia Historical Commission. In his long career, he has worked at both federal and state sites, including 32 years at Fort Pulaski National Monument. Today, although his official duties are to interact with and educate the visiting public, he’s also been known to perform whatever routine maintenance tasks are necessary.
Robert Stinson, a veteran of the U.S. Army’s 10th Mounted Division, including a combat tour in Afghanistan, has taken to his second career in the classrooms of Rossville Middle School with wholehearted enthusiasm. In just six years, he has already been named Rossville Middle School Teacher of the Year and Walker County Schools Teacher of the Year, and been nominated for Georgia Teacher of the Year. Stinson participated in the successful Teacher-Ranger-Teacher Program at Chickamauga-Chattanooga National Military Park, revamping the Junior Ranger Program to more closely adhere to state education standards. He also worked with park staff organize the inaugural, and wildly successful, Summer Camp Day for students in grades 4–8.
Beyond his involvement with the Civil War Trust, Nau is the immediate past chairman of the federal Advisory Council on Historic Preservation and the Texas Historical Commission. He serves in leadership capacities with a variety of charitable entities and is president and chief executive officer of Silver Eagle Distributors, L.P., the nation’s largest distributor of Anheuser-Busch products and the number one beer distributor in Texas.
With 55,000 members, the Civil War Trust is the largest nonprofit battlefield preservation organization in the United States. Its mission is to preserve our nation’s endangered Civil War battlefields and to promote appreciation of these hallowed grounds. To date, the Trust has preserved nearly 30,000 acres of battlefield in 20 states. Learn more at www.civilwar.org.