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Latest News & Announcements

May 31, 2024

Blinn House Pergola Project Wins City of Pasadena Award

On Friday, May 24th, the City of Pasadena’s Historic Preservation Commission presented its annual awards for projects that represent the best of restoration, rehabilitation, and preservation. Pasadena Heritage was honored and very proud to be an award recipient this year for the restoration of the Blinn House Pergola!
Accepting the award for Pasadena Heritage were Historic Architect William Washington Ellinger III who designed and oversaw the restoration of the complex wood structure, Master Carpenter Robert Kaiser who built and installed the replicated wood pieces needed and stabilized the remaining original elements, and outgoing Executive Director Sue Mossman. We were proud, indeed, to win this award for the restoration of the intricate and character-defining pergola that graces the front of the 1906 Blinn House.
May 28, 2024

New Executive Director Joins Pasadena Heritage

Pasadena Heritage is pleased to share an important organizational announcement with you. With the retirement of Executive Director of 30 years Sue Mossman, the Pasadena Heritage Board of Directors has chosen our new Executive Director, Erin Simon.
An extraordinary candidate, selected through an extensive search process, Erin brings a love of history, dedication to community building, marketing background, and excellent fundraising credentials to the organization. As past President and CEO of the National Blues Museum in St. Louis, MO, Erin has in-depth non-profit management experience, and she has also rehabilitated a number of historic homes. Erin's official start date is June 3rd. We look forward to introducing Erin to you and to the greater Pasadena community in the weeks ahead. Please join us in congratulating and welcoming Erin as our next Executive Director!
May 23, 2024

Pasadena Heritage and USC Pacific Asia Museum Provided Cross-Organization Docent Training Opportunity

We were delighted to partner with the USC Pacific Asia Museum this past Sunday to provide docents of each organization with a very special continuing education opportunity.
The USC PAM shared information about traditional Japanese- and Chinese-designed gardens, the "Treasure House," and Grace Nicholson. Dave Nufer, Pasadena Heritage Board Member, presented on the many Asian influences seen in Pasadena's typical architectural styles, ranging from Craftsman architecture to Mid-Century Modern and Ranch-Style homes at the Blinn House.
May 22, 2024

Preservation Director Search

Pasadena Heritage is seeking a person with a passion for preservation and knowledge of historic buildings who wants to help save historic places. We would like to hear from you if you enjoy the role of advocate, are an excellent communicator, and want to work with a great team of professionals and volunteers. To learn more about this opportunity and how to apply, please visit our careers page.
May 10, 2024

Announcing a New Endowment Fund in Sue’s Honor

Pasadena Heritage is proud to announce that a new endowment fund has been established in Sue's name, the Sue Mossman Historic Preservation Fund! Donations to the new endowment will be set aside and invested, generating annual income for the organization and its mission in the future. The first $50,000 has been raised to launch the fund from a group of generous Founders of the Fund. For more information about the fund and how to contribute, please visit the Sue Mossman Historic Preservation Fund age.
May 9, 2024

Sue Mossman Retirement Dinner Met with Sold-Out Crowd

On Saturday, May 5, 2024, Pasadena Heritage held the Sue Mossman Retirement Dinner at the Athenaeum. Reaching it's full capacity, it was a wonderful celebration honoring Sue and her nearly five-decade career with Pasadena Heritage. More than 200 guests enjoyed cocktails, music, dinner and remarks in one of Pasadena’s most beautiful historic buildings with a delicious cake featuring edible pictures of some of the buildings Sue championed in her long career being the show-stopper. THANK YOU to everyone who attended, sponsored, spoke, volunteered or donated. All proceeds from this event support the continued success of our preservation, education and advocacy efforts.
March 28, 2024

Preservation Pasadena Part I – Breaking Ground: The Legacy of Women Landscape Architects is Huge Success

On behalf of everyone at Pasadena Heritage, we send our thanks to all who joined us last weekend for a wonderful series of events celebrating the women who shaped Pasadena’s historic landscapes. Special thanks to the Pasadena Wine Shop for hosting our first sold out wine tasting featuring female winemakers.
We also extend our gratitude to the weekend’s presenters, Erin Chase from The Huntington and Jesse Lattig, Ann Scheid, and Libby Simon from the California Garden & Landscape History Society. Over the course of the weekend, several historic landmarks were open for touring. Thank you to The Town Club Pasadena, Old Mill Foundation, La Casita del Arroyo Foundation, Caltech, and Macy’s Pasadena for opening up their historic sites to our members and guests. And a very special thank you to the event's sponsors KornRandolph, our Lead Sponsor, and Co-Sponsor Susan Masterman Architects•Interiors•Gardens.
March 5, 2024

Sue Mossman Retirement Dinner Set. Sponsorship Opportunities Now Available

After an illustrious career spanning nearly five decades, our Executive Director of 30 years and Pasadena Heritage employee of 45 will be retiring. Please join us as we honor Sue and her long career at the Sue Mossman Retirement Dinner, Saturday, May 4, 2024, at the Athenaeum at Caltech. The evening's festivities will include a cocktail reception, dinner, live entertainment, and heartfelt farewells at the historic Athenaeum.
As Sue retires, she will be leaving an unparalleled legacy in shaping our organization, the City of Pasadena, and the field of preservation. Under Sue’s tenure, Pasadena Heritage has saved countless Pasadena buildings and historic places from demolition and has grown to become one of the most successful and respected preservation organizations in the country. We sincerely hope you will consider joining us as a Sponsor at the Corporate or Individual level in honoring Sue’s legacy and ensuring the continued success of our preservation efforts.
March 4, 2024

Etan Does LA Covers the History of Gartz Court with Assistance from Pasadena Heritage

Etan Does LA covers landmarks on the National Register of Historic Places, and his most recent blog post features the history and unusual story behind Gartz Court in Pasadena.
Threatened with demolition, Pasadena Heritage assisted in saving Gartz Court in 1984 when the six-unit bungalow court was moved to a different Pasadena location and sold as affordable housing. Learn more in Etan's blog, and see a few historic photos and memories from the Pasadena Heritage archives as well!
February 15, 2024

2024 Mills Act Historic Property Contract Guidelines Released by the City

The Historic Property Contract Program, which operates under Mills Act regulations, offers financial incentives through reduced property taxes to encourage the designation, rehabilitation, and protections of historic buildings. This program benefits the owners financially while also ensuring preservation of historic buildings and homes. Approved annually, this year's guidelines have been released and applications are open now through Friday, May 31st at 5:00 PM. Pasadena recently raised the valuation cap on single-family houses, so properties with a total assessed value of $2.0 million or less are eligible for the program.
Pasadena Heritage pushed for the City to adopt the Mills Act and create a local program for many years. We were thrilled when the City did that and since then many have taken advantage of this program that can afford qualified owners significant property tax reductions.
February 8, 2024

Four New Board Members Elected at the Annual Meeting

The Pasadena Heritage 2024 Annual Meeting was held on Wednesday, January 31, at the Blinn House and virtual attendees joining via Zoom. A welcoming reception entertained members and guests before the meeting.
We are tremendously grateful to retiring Board members Mike Avila, Christian Arndt, Senya Lubisich, Bob Ritter and Ben Saltsman for their service and many contributions. Secretary Bob Ritter conducted the election of new Board members Juan Dela Cruz, Janny Mulholland, Steve Preston and Jim Zelenay who were unanimously elected. Both Steve and Jim are returning for a second term as Board members, both having previously served as members and Board chairs.
January 11, 2024

Plaque Dedication in Mills Alley

Pasadena Heritage was honored to attend the Plaque Dedication in Mills Alley on January 9, 2024, an important restorative justice effort that we supported. It was at this site in 1885 that an angry mob burned down Yuen Kee Laundry in the heart of Pasadena's Chinatown at the time. The day after the fire, early Chinese Pasadenans were radically evicted from the central portion of the city.
An earlier plaque (designed to identify for whom the alley was named as part of a District-wide project) only briefly mentioned the fire but did not describe the extent of this ugly incident. The new plaques illuminate what really happened and honor the contributions of Chinese Americans to Pasadena and California. Pasadena Heritage was pleased to support this effort and participate in creating wording for the new plaques which also serve as a call to action in uncertain times: "Pasadena's march toward justice is not complete and must continue in each generation."
January 19, 2024

Dr. Robert Winter Lecture a Hit! Recording Still Available!

Thank you to everyone who joined us last Saturday, both virtually and in person, for the Dr. Robert Winter Memorial Lecture. Ted Ellison delighted a sold-out crowd with his illustrated talk, From Hand to Hearth: Glass Mosaic of the Prairie School, featuring stunning glass work from Maher-designed homes across the country. Following the lecture, guests were treated to a reception with martinis (Dr. Winter's favorite!) and delicious catering provide by Stems. Special thanks to the Blinn House Foundation, our Lead Sponsor, and Pasadena Craftsman Tile for sponsoring this program.
Want to view a recording of this special presentation? Donate to the Dr. Robert Winter Fund to help support this program and receive a link to view the recorded event by visiting our Evenbrite page.

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