June 12, 2023 9:00 am



Historic Preservation Planning for CLGs

Workshop Dates, Location, & Registration Details

In-Person Workshop

Monday, June 12, 2023 – 9 a.m.–4:00 p.m.

Price Center & Garden
222 W. San Antonio Street
San Marcos, Texas 78666

Registration Details

Cost of Workshop is $25.00
Lunch and refreshments will be provided.

Workshop Description

This workshop is geared towards staff, commission members, and other interested parties from city and county CLG communities. The workshop fulfills CLG program requirements that commission members and staff attend a THC-led or THC-approved training at least once a year.

Preservation planning is a proactive way to protect a community’s historic resources and character. It is an ongoing process that recognizes challenges, opportunities, and threats to preservation while setting priorities and focusing future efforts to achieve a community’s goals. The goal of this workshop is to connect our city and county CLGs with some of the preservation planning tools available to them and equip them with an understanding of how CLGs activities fit into preservation at the local, state, and federal level.

The workshop will start with a brief overview of the CLG Program’s requirements, responsibilities, and benefits from state coordinator, Kelly Little.

Cara Bertron from the City of Austin will talk about Austin’s new Equity-Based Preservation Plan. Much has changed in Austin since 1981, when the last historic preservation plan was adopted. The city’s population nearly tripled, a historic district ordinance was passed, and affordable housing and density have become pressing issues. Displacement pressures threaten long-standing residents, especially in areas historically home to communities of color. Through the plan creation process, the City sought to create an inclusive, equity-based, and community-oriented historic preservation plan that will help the City Council, Historic Landmark Commission, and Historic Preservation Office respond to 21st-century challenges with improved policies, programs, and tools.

City or county preservation programs are often invited to consult on federally-funded projects (i.e. Section 106 consultation), but are uncertain of their role in the process. This may include street and sidewalk improvement projects, installation of cellular towers, transportation projects, etc.; all of which can have an effect on a community’s historic resources. Justin Kockritz from THC and Rebekah Dobrasko of TxDOT will provide guidance on the Section 106 process and how CLGs can be engaged to preserve the history and character of their community. Mr. Kockritz will provide an overview of the Section 106 process and how CLGs can effectively participate in consultation. Ms. Dobrasko will present how local governments can partner with TxDOT to ensure effects on historic properties are considered when regional transportation projects are planned. Mr. Kockritz and Jason Rivas of TxDOT will also lead the group on a short walking tour of San Marcos’ downtown commercial historic district to illustrate sample TxDOT project types and the character-defining features (such as decorative streetscape elements, sidewalks adjacent to storefronts and decorative street scape elements).


Meet the Presenters:

Cara Bertron has worked to shape more equitable cities through community stabilization and cultural preservation for more than 15 years. Currently with the City of Austin’s Displacement Prevention Office, Cara led the development of Austin’s Equity-Based Preservation Plan through an innovative community-focused process. Previously, she championed community-focused preservation planning in Seattle’s Chinatown International District and facilitated the development of the Action Agenda for Historic Preservation in Legacy Cities.

Rebekah Dobrasko lives in Austin, Texas and is the Cultural Resources Manager Section Director for the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT). She holds a masters degree in public history from the University of South Carolina and an undergraduate history degree from Tulane University in New Orleans. Prior to joining TxDOT in 2013, Rebekah worked at the South Carolina State Historic Preservation Office in Columbia, South Carolina for ten years. Rebekah is an avid public historian and national expert on the history of African American schools in the South. Her recent projects include a digital exhibit on equalization schools in Charleston, South Carolina in partnership with the College of Charleston; nominating Austin’s African American L.C. Anderson High School stadium to the National Register of Historic Places, and writing interpretive plaques for the historic materials on the interior of the new East Side Memorial High School.

Justin Kockritz has worked for the Texas Historical Commission (THC) for over nine years where he serves as the lead project reviewer for the History Programs Division, focusing on transportation projects under Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act. He previously served as a regional architectural reviewer for the THC, and as an environmental review specialist for the North Carolina State Historic Preservation Office. A native of Dallas, Justin holds a master’s degree in historic preservation from the University of Maryland, and undergraduate degrees from the University of Texas in urban studies and geography.

Kelly Little serves as state coordinator for the Certified Local Government Program at the Texas Historical Commission, where she works with a network of 77 CLG communities across the state to empower local communities to better protect historic resources. Kelly actively volunteers on the board of Preservation Austin and served as a council-appointed member of Austin’s Historic Landmark Commission for four years. She has a Master’s in Historic Preservation from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and a Bachelor’s in Journalism and Mass Communications.

Jason Jonathan Rivas is a historic preservation specialist for the TxDOT. He is a graduate of Texas State University’s Public History Program. Jason previously interned at the Texas Historical Commission as a Preservation Scholar. He also served two stints in AmeriCorps, collecting oral histories in Houston and developing digital outreach and content for Lockhart State Park.


Historic Preservation Planning for CLGs

In-Person Workshop

Monday, June 12, 2023

9 a.m.–4:00 p.m.

Price Center & Garden
222 W. San Antonio Street
San Marcos, Texas 78666

8:30 – 9:00 am Coffee and Networking
9:00 – 9:30 am Welcome and CLG Overview Kelly Little, THC
9:30 – 10:45 am “Preservation planning: Centering community voices in an equity-focused process” Cara Bertron, City of Austin

10:45 – 11:00 am

11:00 am – Noon Educational Walking Tour of San Marcos’ Historic Commercial District Justin Kockritz and Jason Rivas
Noon – 1:00 pm Lunch and Welcome from the City of San Marcos (box lunches provided)
1:00 – 2:00 pm “What is Section106 and How Can CLGs Participate?” Justin Kockritz, THC
2:00 – 3:00 pm “TxDOT and Local Planning Efforts” Rebekah Dobrasko, TxDOT
3:00 – 4:00 pm Questions and discussion with THC and TxDOT staff