Presented by Renasant Bank, the program will feature nationally renowned speakers and local preservation leaders


The Heritage Foundation of Williamson County, TN is hosting its 2nd Annual Preservation Symposium: Practical Preservation, presented by Renasant Bank, at the Williamson County Enrichment Center on Saturday, June 29, 2019 from 8:30 a.m. – 2 p.m.

The symposium is part of an initiative by the Heritage Foundation to increase educational programming for members of the organization and Williamson County preservation advocates. Two keynote speakers will take the stage to present this year’s theme of practical preservation.

Keynote speaker Donovan D. Rypkema, is principal of PlaceEconomics, a Washington, D.C.-based real estate and economic development-consulting firm. The work of the firm is at the nexus of historic preservation and economics. He has undertaken assignments for public and non-profit sector clients in 49 U.S. states. He also teaches a course on the economics of historic preservation at the University of Pennsylvania where he received the 2008 G. Holmes Perkins Award for Distinguished Teaching.

“In the past, historic preservation was appreciated largely because of the aesthetic qualities it provides a city,” said Rypkema. “But recent research has demonstrated that there are multiple contributions made by preservation. These include positive economic, social and environmental impacts.”

The second keynote speaker for the event, Patrice Frey, is President and CEO of the National Main Street Center, where she oversees the Center’s work, offering technical assistance, research, advocacy and education and training opportunities for Main Street’s network of approximately 1,100 communities. Based in Chicago, Illinois, the National Main Street Center is a subsidiary of the National Trust for Historic Preservation and has participated in the renewal of more than 2,000 older commercial districts during its 30-year history.

Rypkema and Frey will give presentations on historic preservation and its impacts. Rypkema will focus on recent preservation impact findings from nearly a dozen city-level analyses conducted in recent years. Frey will offer ways to embrace creative new tools and challenging ideas for 21st century preservation.

“This year’s symposium will offer practical economic lessons from local and national preservation leaders,” said Blake Wintory, Ph.D., Director of Preservation at the Heritage Foundation. “We are excited to have Donovan, Patrice and our panel come together in historic Franklin for this event.”

In addition to the keynote presentations, there will be a panel discussion with state and local preservation professionals. Panel members include Patrick McIntyre, State Historic Preservation Officer and Executive Director of the Tennessee Historical Commission; Amanda Rose, Preservation Planner for the City of Franklin; and J. Roderick Heller III, Developer, Investor and Preservationist.

“Historic preservation is a critical component of sustainable economic development,” said Matt Largen, President and CEO of Williamson, Inc. “I am thrilled the Heritage Foundation of Williamson County is hosting a conversation on the importance of practical preservation and the implication for our community.”

Given the appeal of the program to Downtown Franklin Association (Main Street program) business members and Williamson, Inc. chamber members, the Foundation is partnering with its division and the chamber to offer discounts to these groups. General admission tickets are $25 and $20 for Heritage Foundation members, Downtown Franklin Association members, Franklin Theatre 1937 Club members, Williamson, Inc. members and students. Tickets for the 2nd Annual Symposium can be purchased at or by calling 615-591-8500. Tickets include admission to the event as well as a light breakfast and lunch.

For more information on the 2nd Annual Symposium visit,

About the Heritage Foundation of Williamson County, TN

Since 1967, the Heritage Foundation of Williamson County, TN has been dedicated to protecting and preserving Williamson County’s architectural, geographic and cultural heritage and promoting the ongoing revitalization of downtown Franklin in the context of historic preservation. Notable projects include The Franklin Theatre, Roper’s Knob, parts of the Franklin battlefield and the Old, Old Jail. The Foundation brings county history to about 3,000 public, private and home-schooled children each year through the Heritage Classroom program and walking tours of downtown Franklin. Events and festivals produced by the Heritage Foundation such as Main Street Festival, the Heritage Ball, Pumpkinfest and Dickens of a Christmas bring hundreds of thousands of locals and visitors to downtown Franklin each year. The Heritage Foundation owns and operated the “home of first kisses,” The Franklin Theatre, the area’s nationally accredited Main Street Program through the National Trust for Historic Preservation, Downtown Franklin Association, and the organization’s newest division and current restoration and rehabilitation project, Franklin Grove Estate & Gardens. For more information about the Heritage Foundation, visit