Annual Buffalo County Historical Society Awards Announced for 2024

Annual Buffalo County Historical Society Awards Announced for 2024
BCHS presenting the Preservationist of the Year Award to City Manager Brenda Jensen in front of the Kearney 150 mural.
May 18th, 2024 | Broc Anderson - Community Engagement Director
At the Buffalo County Historical Society/Trails & Rails Museum Annual Meeting on April 21, the annual Preservationist of Year and Volunteer of the Year awards were announced among attending members. The 2024 Preservationist of the Year was awarded to the City of Kearney while the BCHS Volunteer of the Year was presented to Nathan Tye.

The Preservationist of the Year award honors a person, organization or business working to preserve Buffalo County's physical history. Completed or ongoing projects or renovations, longtime work in preservation or a commitment to preserving historical structures and places are eligible for the award. The City of Kearney implemented multiple aspects of the Kearney Sesquicentennial this last year throughout various departments and operations. Examples included a Mural with Impact Art, incorporating a Kearney 150 City logo/sticker on the back of City vehicles, developing and promoting a new Kearney Police Badge with a 150 design, supporting, encouraging, and participating in the Vintage Baseball game, prepping the Kearney Cemetery for the BCHS From Beyond the Grave event, helping to host and plan the Kearney 150 Birthday Party held downtown, implementing and supporting programming through the City of Kearney additional entitiesincluding downtown walking tours and programming via the Kearney Public Library.

Previous winners of the Preservationist of the Year Award are: 2010-Chan Lynch; 2011-June FlesnerBecker; 2012-Bobbie McKenzie and Mardi Anderson; 2013-the Pleasanton FBLA and their instructor, Corliss Dixon; 2014-Dr. Walter Martin; 2015- Kent and Ray Buchanan; 2016-Richter Family, 2017- the Gibbon Heritage Center; 2018-Corene Phillips, 2019-Elaine Batenhorst; 2020-DAR-Kearney Chapter; 2021-The World Theatre; 2022 Lisa Atchison; and 2023- Dan Speirs, posthumously.

The BCHS Volunteer of the Year Award honors those that go above and beyond to help with fundraising, maintenance, archive research, answering phones, giving tours, and/or many other ways to assist BCHS with their mission of preserving and sharing Buffalo County’s vast history. Nathan Tye has served as a BCHS board member, has very popular presentations and programs in the community, is heavily involved in preserving local history by researching and saving archives, volunteered at the BCHS Sesquicentennial downtown birthday party, brought up the idea and helped to implement the vintage baseball game against Stuhr Museum, strongly supports and encourages the BCHS staff and volunteers, and is, quite frankly a ‘do-er.’ His passion for the community, people, and archives are the perfect blend for him to be honored.

Previous winners of the Volunteer of the Year award are: 2013- Todd Pickering; 2014- the 1733 Blacksmith Guild; 2015- Elaine Batenhorst; 2016- Katherine Wielechowski; 2017- Dora Day; 2018- Robyn Kendle; 2019-Mary Beth Lowe; 2020-Janice Martin; 2021-Pat Neff; 2022-Chuck Prochaska; and 2023- Dennis Davenport. 
BCHS presenting the Volunteer of the Year Award to Dr. Nathan Tye in the BCHS archives.

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