Constance Ramirez, a former adjunct professor and frequent advisor for the Historic Preservation Program, has been awarded the 2020 Historic Annapolis (HA) Lifetime Achievement Award, honoring her work, education and advocacy in the preservation field. Ramirez, who retired from teaching last year, has straddled remarkable careers in education and professional practice at the federal, state and local level for nearly five decades. She specialized in cultural resource management for the National Park Service, the General Services Administration along with the Department of the Army and the Department of the Defense, where her work helped shape restoration and preservation efforts of historic and archeological places on military bases and other important sites. She established the National Preservation Institute in 1980, meshing her expertise in service and passion for education; today it offers dozens of professional training seminars in historic preservation and cultural resource management for professionals.
A proponent of hands-on learning opportunities for the next generation of preservationists, Ramirez generously shared the depth and breadth of her experience in the classroom, often bringing her students on site to assist with preservation efforts at the Chase-Lloyd House in Annapolis and other historic sites throughout the state. She regularly accompanied students to Capitol Hill for Lobby Day to advocate for preservation policy and programs.
“Dr. Ramirez was a fixture of the Historic Preservation Program for more than 15 years,” says Program Director Dennis Pogue. “Scores of students benefited from her unmatched knowledge and expertise, and were nurtured by her remarkable generosity of spirit. Developing future leaders and helping students find their way in a profession that she loved was always Connie's highest priority. This award is very richly deserved, and we miss her here in College Park.”
Growing up along the cobblestone streets of Annapolis, Ramirez’s engagement in the field started early; she was one of Historic Annapolis’ first junior guides in the 1950s, sharing her passion for Annapolis’ historic fixtures, including the Chase Lloyd House, where she currently serves as the President of the Board of Trustees.
“Now I’m helping to preserve the house that I loved when I was a Junior Guide for Historic Annapolis—sixty-four years ago,” she told HA.