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The Department of Art and Architectural History will award Adele Chatfield-Taylor its annual Albert Simons Medal of Excellence. This event is part of the College’s 250th anniversary celebration. A reception will follow, and the event is free and open to the public.
Albert Simons (1890–1980) had an immensely influential 60-year career as an architect and preservationist in Charleston, where he is best known for his extensive preservation work and architectural design. He played a key role in the Charleston Renaissance, wherein he would help create many nationally prominent preservation functions such as the zoning ordinance for the historic district, the first such ordinance in America with municipal austerity, and the first Board of Architectural Review. As a professor at the College of Charleston for over 20 years, he started the School of the Arts and is honored yearly through the Simons Medal of Excellence.
The Simons Medal honors qualified individuals who have excelled in one or more of the areas in which Albert Simons excelled, including civic design, architectural design, historic preservation and urban planning.
This year’s Simons Medal recipient, Adele Chatfield-Taylor, served as president of the American Academy in Rome from 1988 to 2013. In 2002, she was recognized by the president of Italy for “doing the unthinkable — making Rome more beautiful.” She played leading roles in the NYC Landmarks Preservation Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts. She has taught at Columbia University and advised the architecture schools of Yale, Harvard, Princeton and others. Numerous societies have lauded her, including the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the National Building Museum and the Foundation for Landscape Studies. She is honored with the Simons Medal for her lifetime of work defending architectural beauty and supporting the fabric of communities in the United States and beyond. Every field she has touched, from criticism to education, from urban design to landscape architecture, has been enriched by her mind and spirit.