2021 Award Recipients
The Friends Alliance Awards recognize and honor outstanding volunteer efforts by local Friends Groups or individuals that support THC historic sites. We present these awards in partnership with the THC Historic Sites Division’s Community Partnerships Program.
In 2021, the Friends of the Texas Historical Commission recognized the following individuals for their outstanding work supporting the Texas Historical Commission.
Lois Lacy: The Friends Alliance Award for Friendraising
We are thrilled to present Lois Lacy with the Friends Alliance Award for Friendraising in recognition of her work creating an engaged and sustainable Friends Group organization to support the Mission Dolores State Historic Site in San Augustine, Texas.
Mission Dolores transferred to the Texas Historical Commission in 2017, and within the first year, Lois took the lead role in organizing the Friends of Mission Dolores. From its inception until this year, she served as president and established the group’s governance by learning best practices for nonprofits, creating clear channels of communication between the group and the THC, and building a Friends Group with high standards of integrity that could stand the test of time.
Within the first two years, the Friends Group garnered almost 150 region-wide members and a core group of board members who serve as dedicated fundraisers, volunteers, promoters, and partners to the site and its staff.
Sharon Cowell: The Friends Alliance Award for Civic Engagement
We are excited to present Sharon Cowell with the Friends Alliance Award for Civic Engagement in recognition of her work with the Magoffin Home State Historic Site in El Paso, Texas.
Sharon was one of the earliest supporters of the Magoffin Home, joining as one of the inaugural members of the site’s Friends Group, the Casa Magoffin Compañeros, over 25 years ago. Over the years, Sharon has been instrumental in assisting site staff with important research about the Magoffin family. She has also portrayed the Magoffin Home matriarch, Octavia Magoffin, during the site’s special events and to schoolchildren and various history and civic organizations.
Magoffin Home staff say they are grateful for the optimistic, can-do attitude Sharon brings to every volunteer task, her dedicated research, and the personal touches she brings to her living history characters as she engages audiences of all ages with the site’s history.