Commissioners, Review Board, State Preservation Grants Review Panel

Courtroom, Old State House
Inside the Old State House, the former courtroom of the Sixth District Court serves as a RIHPHC meeting space

Created in 1968, the Commission serves as a board of directors for the agency. It sets preservation policy for the office, makes some specific program decisions, and offers professional perspectives from historical and preservation organizations around the state. The public body consists of fifteen members who serve in a voluntary capacity. Ten public members are appointed by the Governor and include a historian, an archaeologist, an architectural historian or an architect, a landscape historian or landscape architect, a museologist, and an anthropologist. Five members serve ex officio: the director of the Department of Environmental Management, the director of the Economic Development Corporation, the associate director of Administration for planning, the State Building Commissioner, and the State Historic Preservation Officer. 

Commissioners include:

J. Michael Abbott, AIA (Commission Secretary)
Mr. Abbott is an architect with over thirty years professional experience with historic rehabilitation and adaptive reuse projects.

C. Morgan Grefe, Ph.D.
Dr. Grefe is the Executive Director of the Rhode Island Historical Society.

Kaity Ryan
Ms. Ryan is the Executive Director of the Norman Bird Sanctuary.

Clark Schoettle
Mr. Schoettle is the former executive director of the Providence Revolving Fund.

Ruth Taylor (Commission Chair)
Ms. Taylor is the executive director of the Newport Historical Society.

Meredith E. Brady (ex officio)
Ms. Brady is the Associate Director of the Division of Statewide Planning, Rhode Island Department of Administration.
Represented by Roberta Groch

Terrence Gray (ex officio)
Mr. Gray is the Acting Director of the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management.
Represented by Paul Jordan

Jesse Saglio (ex officio)
Mr. Saglio is President of the Rhode Island Commerce Corporation.

James Cambio (ex officio)
Mr. Cambio is the State Building Code Commissioner.
Represented by Warren Ducharme, R.A.

Jeffrey Emidy (ex officio)
Deputy State Historic Preservation Officer

The State Review Board includes J. Michael Abbott (see Commissioners) as well as:

Marisa Angell Brown, Ph.D.
Dr. Brown is a cultural historian and curator.  She serves as Assistant Director for Programs of the John Nicholas Brown Center for Public Humanities and Cultural Heritage at Brown University.

Patrick Malone, Ph.D.
Dr. Malone is an industrial archaeologist and historian of technology. He is Professor Emeritus of American Studies at Brown University.

Ronald Onorato, Ph.D. (Board Chair)
Dr. Onorato is Professor Emeritus of Art and Architectural History at the University of Rhode Island.

Edward F. Sanderson
Mr. Sanderson is a former Executive Director of the Rhode Island Historical Preservation & Heritage Commission and a former State Historic Preservation Officer.

Keith Stokes
Mr. Stokes is Vice President of 1696 Heritage Group, a consulting firm that helps persons and institutions of color expand their knowledge and access to their unique American heritage.

Martha Werenfels, FAIA, LEED AP
Ms. Werenfels, FAIA, LEED AP is a Senior Principal Architect at DBVW Architects in Providence. 

The State Preservation Grants Review Panel includes Jeffrey Emidy (see Commissioners) and Dr. Ronald Onorato (see State Review Board) as well as:

Shantia Anderheggen
Ms. Anderheggen is a historic preservation consultant.

Pierson Booher, AIA, NCARB
Mr. Booher, AIA, NCARB is a Principal Architect at DBVW Architects in Providence.

Molly Dickinson
Ms. Dickinson is an artist and arts administrator who represents the RI State Council on the Arts on this panel. 

Grace Gielink
Ms. Gielink is the Program and Property Coordinator at Preserve Rhode Island.

Simidele Mabray
Ms. Mabray is a Project Manager at the RI Division of Capital Assets Management & Maintenance.