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Degree: 2014, Historic Preservation M.A.
Job Title: Architectural Historian for DelDot
Alexandra Tarantino is a University of Delaware Alumni who graduated from the Historic Preservation Master's program in 2014. Tarantino chose UD's program because of the assistantship opportunity offered to her by the Center for Historic Architecture and Design.
None of the schools offered the hands-on work experience UD promised with CHAD.
David Ames and Rebecca Sheppard were two professors who sparked Tarantino's interest in studying and preserving architecture. "They helped nurture my interest in architecture and both have a wealth of knowledge," she said, "it was cool to be able to learn from people who knew so much about the surrounding area."
Tarantino is an Architectural Historian for the Delaware Department of Transportation (DelDOT) where she works to ensure compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act and Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act. An important aspect of her job is making sure the community is up to date with information about potential DelDOT project impacts to historic structures and explaining why something is historically significant.
One of the projects Tarantino and her team are currently working on is the removal of the railroad swing bridge over the Lewes-Rehoboth Canal in Lewes, DE. It's one of the last bridges of its kind in Delaware, however, needs to be removed because it is no longer safe. For the past two years, Tarantino has been working towards mitigating any concern and confusion over the removal. Now she is brainstorming ideas on historic interpretations of the bridge and creative ways to get the community interested in the process.
"It's easy to forget and not realize how history has a lot to do with your quality of life. Historical buildings and structures provide a sense of place and are part of the reason why you like living where you live and why you visit different places" said Tarantino.
As for any advice to the incoming and current students of the Biden Institute, she recommends that you ask your program and professors: "what can they offer you?" Undergraduates have a unique opportunity to discover their passions in life and turn them into a realistic job. Learn from your mentors and seek opportunities like CHAD, that will give you the hands-on experience you need to find success in your career.
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Degree: 2014, M.A. and H.P. Certificate
Job Title: Senior Planner at the Town of Smyrna and member of the State Review Board for Historic Preservation
Jeremy Rothwell (M.A. 2014 and HP Certificate 2015) is currently the City Planner for the City of Harrington, Delaware, and a professional member of the Delaware State Review Board for Historic Preservation. As City Planner, he provides technical reviews for all Harrington site-plan, subdivision and building-permit applications for compliance with the city code and comprehensive plan.
The Delaware State Review Board for Historic Preservation serves as the advisory body to the state historic preservation officer, the official appointed by the governor to oversee and implement the state's preservation policies in accordance with federal standards. The Board evaluates historic properties for placement in the National Register of Historic Places, and provides professional advice on historic preservation matters.
From 2014 to 2016, Rothwell worked as a planner for the Talbot County, Maryland Department of Planning and Zoning. While there, he served as the primary staff liaison to the Talbot County Historic Preservation Commission, documented multiple historic properties, and served as the local contract-administrator for grant projects funded through the Maryland Historic Trust and the Maryland Department of Natural Resources.
Rothwell has worked on master plans for the villages of Tilghman and Bellevue in Maryland, managed community survey projects, and coordinated activities with multiple committees and associations. Miscellaneous projects include assignments associated with environmental management, comprehensive survey of organic farming, field documentation of historic structures, and land-conservation experiences.
His career in the U.S. armed forces includes a 12-year stint with the Maryland Army National Guard as a medical squad leader, and service in Iraq and Egypt in support of Multinational Force and Observers, Sinai. He is a recipient of the Combat Medical Badge, Army Commendation Medal, Good Conduct Medal, Reserve Component Achievement Medal, Iraq Campaign Medal, Global War of Terrorism Service Medal, and Multinational Force and Observers Medal.
Degree: 2012, Public Planning and Historic Preservation
Job Title: Community Planner with the Federal Transit Administration
Laura Keeley found success working as an Architectural Historian after graduating from the Public Planning and Historic Preservation masters programs in 2012. Keeley wanted her masters experience to be holistic with a multi-discipline approach.
I went right into a summer internship with the Patuxent River Naval Air Station Facilities Command Division set up through the National Council for Preservation Education, said Keeley, then I was very fortunate to get a job as a Planner at DelDOT where I worked in the environmental section as an Architectural Historian.
Recently Keeley has transitioned into working with MPOs (Metropolitan Planning Organizations) in her position as a Community Planner with the Federal Transit Administration, giving guidance on how to program and fund long-term transportation plans. Keeley shared that when MPOs and other planning organizations ask for, or need guidance and information on transportation planning, we share best practices/good examples like the Lehigh Valley effort and give guidance on how to comply with federal planning regulations. In a nutshell it's more providing guidance and oversight of Pennsylvania's local and statewide transit planning and programming.
Keeley credits her area of work to CHAD. She enjoyed the multidisciplinary approach and said, the program really offers you the window you may end up running with, which made a big difference in my career.
As for any advice to those currently pursuing a career in Architecture and Historic Preservation, Keeley encourages you to actively seek out who is missing from the conversation. When analyzing GIS maps and programming data, identify gaps. We all exist in a landscape that is taken by each generation, said Keeley.
Everything around us has been guided by previous decision making and population needs change. How do we move forward while understanding history and present day?
Degree: 2007, M.A.
Job Title: Principal, Down Jersey Heritage Research, LLC
I am currently Principal, Down Jersey Heritage Research LLC, located in Salem, New Jersey. In celebration of 20 years in business I recently reorganized as an LLC with a new name (formerly Cultural Heritage Landscape Historian and Heritage Preservation Consultant). In 2007 I received an M.A. in Urban Affairs & Public Policy with a Concentration in Historic Preservation and a specialization in preservation planning.
My practice is twofold: I provide heritage preservation services for clients, and I carry out independent study of the cultural landscape in southern New Jersey under research grants. My backgrounds in engineering, architecture, photography, local historic preservation activism, and professional training in cultural landscape research and preservation have given me a broad range of skills and experiences. I want my work to result in more and better preservation of the historic built environment.
My specialties include heritage recording (scaled field notes, AutoCAD drawing, photography -- digital or film, small, medium and large format, wet darkroom); National Register nomination preparation; cultural resource survey (experience in New Jersey and Delaware ); deed mapping; spatial analysis of historic land parcels using GIS; quantitative analysis of historical data with SPSS; Garden State Historic Preservation Fund, NJ Historical Commission grant application and administration; preservation planning for local government; and drafting of ordinances.
My research Interests include Salem County architecture and landscape history, timber frame architecture, African American properties and agricultural properties. I have a teaching interest in building recording. I trained local history enthusiasts under a NJ Historical Commission grant and ran a hands-on session at the 2014 NJ Historic Preservation Conference and am seeking new opportunities in that area. I was recently appointed to the editorial board of the new online journal, New Jersey Studies: An Interdisciplinary Journal, and look forward to that new challenge.
Degree: 1998, M.A.
Job Title: Director, Office of Environmental Planning and Historic Preservation at the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)
Angela Gladwell (M.A. 98) is currently Director of the Office of Environmental Planning and Historic Preservation (OEHP) at the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) in Washington, DC. Angela has over 15 years of experience in environmental planning in the context of emergency management decision making. OEHP manages and oversees FEMAs compliance with federal environmental planning and historic preservation laws and executive orders, which is required when FEMA takes actions or provides funding to communities. Angela has been instrumental in significantly maturing this FEMA function and establishing and developing OEHP as an office (2008). OEHP plays a key role in helping to inform FEMA decision-making across the spectrum of their programs, and has contributed to national dialogues such as the role of natural resources and climate change in disaster resiliency as well the community-based importance of historic and cultural resources during disaster preparedness, mitigation, response, and recovery. Most recently, Angela and her team led the development and implementation of a Unified Federal Review process across 13 federal departments and agencies; this process applies a consistent compliance approach to inter-agency disaster recovery efforts, as required by the Sandy Recovery Improvement Act (2013).
Angela has received a number of awards and recognition for her work, including the DHS Environmental Achievement Award (2005), the University of Delaware Presidential Citation for Outstanding Achievement (2005), and a FEMA Administrator Award for Outstanding Survivor Services (2011).
Angela currently resides in Manassas, Virginia, with her husband and two children, where she is active with both the Boy and Girl Scouts of America.