NC Preservation Awards

The awards recognize outstanding people, projects, businesses, and organizations in the field of historic preservation. The strength of our awards program comes from the work of people who take the time to nominate deserving individuals, organizations, and projects that have made a difference in historic preservation.


2024 NC Preservation Awards nominations are OPEN and will close on March 31, 2024.


The categories for the awards are:

Gertrude S. Carraway Awards of Merit

The Gertrude S. Carraway Awards of Merit are named in honor of the late Dr. Gertrude S. Carraway, a noted New Bern historian and preservationist. Presented since 1974, a maximum of twelve awards are given each year. The Awards of Merit give deserved recognition to individuals or organizations that have demonstrated a genuine commitment to historic preservation through extraordinary leadership, research, philanthropy, promotion, and/or significant participation in preservation.

Stedman Incentive Grant

The Stedman Incentive Grant is awarded to recognize and assist non-profit organizations in their efforts to preserve the state’s architectural heritage. Originating in 1976, the $15,000 award is funded each year by the Marion Stedman Covington Foundation of Greensboro in memory of Mrs. Covington’s father. The grant encourages and facilitates the rescue of endangered historic and architecturally significant properties in North Carolina. Only one Stedman Grant is awarded annually.

Alexa Aycock Grassroots Leadership Award

(NEW award category for 2024!)

The Alexa Aycock Grassroots Leadership Award is the highest honor presented to an individual that has been a catalyst and leader in generating community engagement and support of historic preservation at the local level through advocacy and education. This award recognizes the importance of grassroots preservation campaigns to the success and continuation of the preservation movement across the state. First presented in 2024 by the Marion Stedman Covington Foundation of Greensboro, the award comes with a $500 stipend and an additional $500 award directed to a non-profit organization that supports historic preservation in North Carolina of the recipient’s choice. The award is possible by the Covington Foundation in honor of Alexa Aycock, who served as the Foundation’s grants coordinator and Executive Director for more than 30 years. The foundation funded more than $4.7 million in grants to preservation projects under Alexa’s leadership.

DeWayne H. Anderson Sr. Award for Housing

The DeWayne H. Anderson Sr. Award for Housing is the highest honor given by Preservation North Carolina for the creation or preservation of housing in historic buildings. This award recognizes the innovative use of historic buildings to create new or updated housing. Creative affordable or downtown housing solutions through historic preservation are of special interest. First presented in 2023, the award is made possible by the family of the late DeWayne H. Anderson, Sr., of Winston-Salem, whose career and leadership resulted in thousands of units of new housing in historic schools, mills and hospitals across the South. His adaptive use of Piedmont Leaf Lofts into housing was instrumental in the remarkable revitalization of downtown Winston-Salem.

Minnette C. Duffy Landscape Preservation Award

The Minnette C. Duffy Landscape Preservation Award is the highest honor given for the preservation, restoration or maintenance of landscapes, gardens, streetscapes, or grounds related to historic structures. This award recognizes the importance of the landscape in the preservation of historic structures. First presented in 1987, the award is made possible by the family of the late Minnette Chapman Duffy of New Bern, whose leadership contributed to the reconstruction of Tryon Palace. Landscape architects, preservation organizations, garden clubs, local governments, property owners or volunteers who have demonstrated outstanding leadership, research or work in landscape preservation are eligible. The recipient receives a $500 stipend.

L. Vincent Lowe Jr. Business Award

The L. Vincent Lowe Jr. Business Award is the highest honor presented to a business that assists or promotes historic preservation in North Carolina. Established in 1983 as the North Carolina Business Award, the name was changed in memory of Vince Lowe of Wilson, a longtime supporter of historic causes in North Carolina, who was serving as chairman of Preservation NC’s 50th Anniversary Campaign at the time of his unexpected death in 1989. The Lowe Business Award acknowledges the involvement of the business community in preservation and recognizes businesses that have shown vision, leadership and creativity in promoting the protection of the state’s architectural resources.

Robert E. Stipe Professional Award

The Robert E Stipe Professional Award is the highest honor presented to working professionals who demonstrate an outstanding commitment to preservation as part of their job responsibilities. The award was established in 1983 to memorialize the many contributions of Robert E. Stipe of Chapel Hill, an educator in the field of historic preservation and a mentor to a generation of preservation professionals. The award recognizes career men and women who show exceptional leadership and/or dedication to the cause of preservation. Individuals working in the field of historic preservation are eligible, including staff of non-profit preservation organizations, architects, landscape architects, planners, teachers, contractors, craftspeople, consultants, and North Carolina State Historic Preservation Office staff. The recipient receives a $500 stipend.

Ruth Coltrane Cannon Award

The Ruth Coltrane Cannon Award, North Carolina’s most prestigious preservation award, is presented to an individual or organization that has made contributions of statewide significance to historic preservation in North Carolina. Originating in 1948, the award is named for Ruth Coltrane Cannon of Concord — president of the North Carolina Society for the Preservation of Antiquities, 1945-1956 — in recognition of her outstanding contributions to preservation. The recipient receives an engraved pewter cup. The winner’s name is also added to a master Cannon Cup, which now includes a long list of North Carolina notables. Only one Cannon Award is presented each year.


Required materials to submit your nomination:

  1. A concise, accurate narrative of 500 words or less about the individual, organization, or project being nominated.
  2. At least 10 high resolution photos. Please make sure the images provide the best representation of the nomination. These photos should illustrate your nomination from start to finish.
  3. Photo caption file including a list of all the images you submit (identify each image by the file name) and credits/source details for each photo. The captions should clearly describe what is being illustrated.
  4. Up to five supporting materials including: letters of support, news articles, videos, etc. Other potential supporting documents may include but are not limited to Historic Register nomination excerpts (do not attach the full nomination), construction drawings, and brochures. Letters of support are strongly recommended to demonstrate community support.

Click here to submit a 2024 NC Preservation Award nomination!

Click here to view the scoring criteria


2023 NC Preservation Carrawary Award Winners


Congratulations to the 2023 Preservation North Carolina Honor Award Winners

Ruth Coltrane Cannon Award
John Larson, Winston-Salem  

Robert E. Stipe Professional Award
Michelle Michael, Wake Forest  

Stedman Incentive Grant
Addor Community Center Inc., Pinebluff  

Vincent Lowe, Jr., Business Award
TurnLight Partners, Durham  

Minnette C. Duffy Landscape Preservation Award
Friends of Geer Cemetery, Durham 

DeWayne H. Anderson Sr. Award for Housing
The Landmark Group, Winston-Salem 

Gertrude S. Carraway Awards of Merit
Empire Properties for the Efird Building, Raleigh 
Summit Street Inns, Winston-Salem 
Joshua and Alexandra Thompsonfor the Wilson-Winstead House, Milton
Paul and Fabiana Lehmannfor the James Wilburn Whitehead House, Banner Elk 
Riz Khan for the Model Farm, High-Point 
Trenton Mill, Gastonia
Rehab Development for the Piedmont Buggy Factory, Monroe
The Town of Davidson for the Historic Davidson School
Vincent Spaulding for the George Henry White Memorial Health and Education Center, Bladen County 
The Johnston Mill, Charlotte
Peggy and Jackson Smith for Great Houses and Their Stories: Winston-Salem’s “Era of Success,” 1912-1940
Tina Konidaris and Jeff Turpin for the Andrews-Duncan House, Raleigh

Click here to view the 2023 NC Preservation Awards Videos

Click here for a complete list of past Preservation North Carolina Honor Award Winners

Click here to submit a 2024 NC Preservation Award nomination!