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Campus preservation and planning garners Salve Regina 2014 Arthur Ross Award for Stewardship

For protecting the architectural legacy of its campus and commissioning new buildings that harmonize with its historic structures, Salve Regina University has been named winner of the 2014 Arthur Ross Award for Stewardship. Past honorees include Monticello/Thomas Jefferson Foundation in Charlottesville, Va., The New York Botanical Garden in The Bronx, N.Y., and the U.S. Commission of Fine Arts in Washington, D.C.

Presented by The Institute of Classical Architecture & Art (ICAA), members of the Salve Regina leadership team will accept the award during the 32nd Annual Arthur Ross Awards for Excellence in the Classical Tradition on Monday, May 5 at the University Club, One West 54th St., New York City.

“People who preserve exemplary buildings and their immediate environments, even in the face of changing needs and resources, provide a gift to future generations,” said Mark Ferguson, chairman of the ICAA Board of Directors. “Salve Regina University has fulfilled this responsibility on a remarkable scale with great sensitivity, especially as the university added new buildings to its campus. The Arthur Ross Award recognizes the astute and indefatigable effort of Salve Regina’s leaders to expand an initial gift of one house into an entire campus of more than 50 buildings on 80 acres. It also recognizes the university for offering training to future preservation professionals, thereby providing support to all stewards.”

Among those representing Salve Regina in New York will be Jane Gerety, president; Therese Antone, chancellor; Janet Robinson, board of trustees chair; and Michael Semenza, vice president, University Relations and Advancement.

“We value our heritage and feel a strong sense of responsibility to preserve it for future generations of students, members of the community and visitors to Newport,” Gerety said. “One of the great legacies of Salve Regina to students is the wonderful architecture and the historic landscapes where they live and study.”

Salve Regina’s campus, sited on cliffs overlooking the Atlantic Ocean, includes more than 21 historic buildings with defining works by such notable 19th and 20th century architects and designers as Richard Morris Hunt, H.H. Richardson, McKim, Mead & White, Peabody & Stearns, Seth Bradford, Frank Furness and Dudley Newton. Its 80-acre campus is comprised of seven contiguous 19th century estates, originally built for distinguished patrons by the premier architects of America’s post-Civil War and Gilded Age.

“Salve Regina University has become an exemplary steward of campus buildings that are nationally significant for historic architecture,” said Edward Sanderson, executive director of the Rhode Island Historical Preservation & Heritage Commission. “Preserving these landmarks in active use keeps them vital for Salve’s students and the larger community.”

The university’s institutional success in forming its campus is the product of preservation, adaptive reuse and stewardship. New structures also reflect this philosophy with the university commissioning designs for buildings to enhance the architectural context of the old. Robert A.M. Stern Architects designed the two newest structures, a recreation center and a chapel, in a Shingle-style vernacular that reflects the historic setting of the university and its surrounding neighborhood.

Established in 1982 by Classical America advocate, Arthur Ross (1910–2007), and its president, Henry Hope Reed (1916–2013), the Arthur Ross Awards were created to recognize and celebrate excellence in the classical tradition. From the beginning, the awards have recognized the achievements and contributions of architects, painters, sculptors, artisans, landscape designers, educators, publishers, patrons, and others dedicated to preserving and advancing the classical tradition.

The awardees are chosen each year by a selection committee made up of members of the ICAA Board of Directors, Advisory Council, Fellows, and distinguished members of related professions.