Shining a Spotlight

Indiana Landmarks’ awards recognize nonprofit groups who save and celebrate historic places, owners responsible for superior restorations, and individuals who show outstanding leadership in historic preservation.

Mark and Becca Ewing John Arnold Award
Mark and Becca Ewing (center) won the John Arnold Award for Rural Preservation in 2010 for preserving their Vincennes farm. Indiana Landmarks' Tommy Kleckner (left) and Marsh Davis (right) presented the award, along with Eleanor Arnold (second from right), whose son the award honors.

Recognition for Preservation Leaders

Cook Cup for Outstanding Restoration

Indiana Landmarks awards the Cook Cup to the owner who follows the highest standards of restoration in methods, materials and design in transforming a significant historic building, with positive impact on its neighborhood or community.


For its exemplary restoration of the 1940 Fowler Theatre, Prairie Preservation Guild won the Cook Cup for Outstanding Restoration in 2016.

The nominee may be an individual, corporation or partnership, nonprofit organization, or government entity. The restoration must have been completed within the past two years, and the structure must be in active use for its original purpose or adapted for a new role. We welcome self-nominations.

We present The Cook Cup annually at Rescue Party, our April fundraiser for our endangered places programs. The winner receives an engraved silver cup, and is profiled in Indiana Preservation magazine.

Indiana Landmarks inaugurated the Cook Cup for Outstanding Restoration in 2007, when the prize went to the award’s namesake family in honor of its transformation of the West Baden and French Lick Springs hotels in southern Indiana. The Cook family is nationally recognized for their many restorations of significant landmarks in Bloomington and throughout southern in Indiana.

Download the nomination form here.

Sandi Servaas Memorial Award

Our Sandi Servaas Memorial Award recognizes outstanding achievement by nonprofit or public institutions and youth-serving programs across the broad spectrum of historic preservation. The Servaas Award judges favor nominations that convey how the entrant displayed high standards and success in historic preservation, and benefited a neighborhood, town or place. We welcome self-nominations.

Servaas Winners 11

At our September 2011 annual meeting, Jean Servaas (center) congratulated winners of Indiana Landmarks’ Servaas Memorial Awards (from left): Larry Stout of Rushville, the Delphi Preservation Society, accepted by Greg Norman and Anita Werling, and Cathedral High School’s Latin III Language Support Program, accepted by students and teacher Jennifer Pearson.

Activities that might warrant a nomination include success in saving or protecting historic places; campaigns, programs or events that substantially raised preservation awareness; sustained educational programs that engage young people in preservation and elevate their appreciation of landmarks.

The winning nonprofit organization receives $2,000, and $1,000 goes to the winner in the youth-serving category. Each winner also takes home an original Servaas Memorial Award sculpture, “No Doors to Lock out the Past,” by Indiana artist John McNaughton.

Indiana Landmarks presents the Servaas Award at our annual meeting in Indianapolis in September. The award, introduced in 1977, is named for a dynamic, visionary staff member who died tragically in 1976.

Download the nomination form here.

Williamson Prize

The Williamson Prize recognizes sustained, outstanding leadership and achievement in historic preservation by an individual. Think of it as a lifetime achievement award. We welcome self-nominations.

Activities that might warrant a nomination include but aren’t limited to:

  • Leadership in projects that saved or protected a historic place or places
  • Superlative leadership in campaigns, programs or events that substantially raised preservation awareness in a community or region
  • Leadership in advocacy for saving endangered places
  • Leadership in revitalizing a downtown or historic neighborhood

The winning individual receives $1,000 and a custom sculpture representing the Williamson Prize.

Indiana Landmarks presents the Williamson Prize at our annual meeting in Indianapolis in September. The award is named for J. Reid Williamson, Jr., a national preservation leader and president of Indiana Landmarks from 1973 to 2005.

Download the nomination form here.

John Arnold Rural Preservation Award

Would we be Indiana without the historic barns that dot the landscape? Changes in agricultural practices and commercial land development pose increasing threats to farming related landmarks.


For preservation of their Owen County farm, Margie and Gary Byerly won the John Arnold Award for Rural Preservation in 2008.

To celebrate people who preserve and continue to use historic agricultural buildings for farming-related purposes, Indiana Landmarks annually presents the John Arnold Rural Preservation Award. The award winner receives a handsome outdoor marker at a ceremony during the state fair, and a profile in Indiana Preservation magazine.

We created the award in memory of John Arnold (1955-1991), a Rush County farmer who combined progressive architectural practices with respect for the historic man-made and natural components of rural landscapes.

Download the nomination form here.

Regional Awards for Preservation

Each year, Indiana Landmarks’ regional offices recognize people and projects that exemplify preservation and stewardship of historic places. They select winners who maintain landmarks in tip-top shape that still serve their original purposes, as well as owners who adapt historic structures to new uses, perform outstanding restorations, and more.

Oasis Diner, Plainfield, IN

Doug Huff and Don Rector won an outstanding restoration award in 2015 for their transformation of Plainfield’s Oasis Diner (Photo: Hadley Fruits).

Regional winners receive custom-designed framed awards presented at an event in each region. If you know a project you believe deserves accolades, contact the regional office nearest you.