National Alliance of Preservation Commissions (NAPC)
Helps communities build strong local preservation programs and leaders through education, training, and advocacy.
The National Alliance of Preservation Commissions (NAPC) was founded in 1983 in response to amendments to the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966. These amendments provided financial assistance to local governments that met requirements of the Certified Local Government program, including the establishment of a local preservation ordinance and commission. NAPC was formed to provide a forum for commissions to discuss mutual problems and to serve as a national voice representing the particular needs of commissions.
NAPC provides technical support and manages an information network to help local commissions accomplish their preservation objectives. Our established education and training programs, including our biennial FORUM conference and Commission Assistance and Mentoring Program (CAMP®), have provided essential training to thousands of commission members and staff. NAPC also serves as an advocate at federal, state and local levels of government to promote policies and programs that support preservation commission efforts, thanks in part to collaboration with our partner organizations in Washington, D.C.
Values and Principles
Advocacy involves publicly promoting the interests or causes of a group of people, a program, or policy. People engaged in preservation advocacy have many goals, from working to improve one’s own situation to considering the larger field and its operation. We can be reactive and proactive in advocacy work. NAPC plans to reinvigorate our advocacy platform with a bolder effort to promote the interests of local preservation programs and commissions.
NAPC’s advocacy program will be derived from the set of principles and values that the organization recently adopted to use as the framework for all of its programs. Hallmarks of effective advocacy require an understanding of how the current policies and practices work at all levels of government, as well as the implications of proposed changes. We know that our members, Board of Directors, trainers and staff have the experience and expertise to advocate effectively for local historic preservation programs. We will work with our partners in preservation to advocate as a group effort as we emphasize the effects on and needs of local preservation programs. There’s a role for you in these efforts as well – let us know if you’d like to receive NAPC Advocacy alerts. Contribute your experience, successful or not, when a topic is discussed on NAPC-L as we explore what is working well and what could be more effective.
NAPC will also proactively advocate for changes that our community identifies as important to local preservation programs. We know that we have more than success stories to share and could more robustly evaluate the effectiveness of long-used programs and policies. The evaluation of program goals, practices, and habits of thought when programs are municipal and intended to serve the public should be ongoing and vigorous – even as our government frameworks are difficult to alter. Please start conversations on matters that concern you, through NAPC-L or more direct communication with the Executive Director. Our Advocacy Committee will give them due consideration as we advocate for extending the range of effective practices in our field.
Often, local historic preservation programs must advocate consistently for their value and relevance – even continued existence – in the communities they serve. The practical preservation politics are local and require careful tending. We will provide information and strategies to empower local programs to advocate for themselves.
For more NAPC information, their website is:
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