Press Contact:
Elinor Betesh
GHF Press Relations

Global Heritage Fund Promotes
Dr. Vince Michael to Executive Director

Jeff Morgan, Founder and Decade-Long
Executive Director, elected Vice Chairman

PALO ALTO, CA (January 7, 2013) – Global Heritage Fund (GHF), an international conservancy that protects and preserves cultural heritage sites in developing countries, today announced the appointment of Dr. Vince Michael as Executive Director after serving as GHF’s Chief Conservation Officer and Chairman of the Senior Advisory Board. Dr. Michael joined GHF in June 2012 and will spearhead GHF’s global conservation and community development operations worldwide.

Jeff Morgan, Founder and Executive Director, will take on a new role as Vice Chairman of GHF where he will focus on strategic project- and resource development for the organization.

“We are excited to welcome Vince Michael, a long-term champion of global historic preservation, to lead GHF’s executive team and build on our success as a leading international conservancy,” said Jeff Morgan. “His international experience and technical expertise will enable GHF to grow and realize the untapped potential of the world’s heritage sites to stimulate economic growth, rural transformation and poverty alleviation in developing countries.”

Prior to joining GHF, Dr. Michael was the John H. Bryan Chair in Historic Preservation at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, where he also served as Director of the Historic Preservation Program from 1996 to 2010. A professional preservationist since 1983, Dr. Michael is a Trustee of the National Trust for Historic Preservation as well as Chair Emeritus of the National Council for Preservation Education. He also serves on the Board of Landmarks Illinois and has served on the Illinois Historic Sites Advisory Council and the Oak Park Historic Preservation Commission.

Dr. Michael’s recent projects include a decade-long preservation undertaking at the Weishan Heritage Valley in Yunnan, China, together with the Center for U.S.-China Arts Exchange at Columbia University. Dr. Michael is a frequent lecturer on historic preservation, architecture, geography, art and history throughout the United States, Europe and Asia. His writings include articles in Design Issues, Future Anterior, Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians, Traditional Building, forum journal and The Encyclopedia of Chicago, a book on architect Barry Byrne, and media programs on architecture in Chicago. Dr. Michael also manages a personal blog, Time Tells, which is often referenced by traditional press and media.

“I am both honored and excited to accept this position.” says Dr. Michael. “Thanks to the vision and hard work of Jeff Morgan over the past decade, GHF is today the only international conservancy focused on helping the world’s poorest communities to preserve and benefit from their heritage. GHF has proved the invaluable role of heritage conservation as a vital tool for economic improvement in the developing world and a unique approach to strengthening communities in these regions.”

“Under Jeff Morgan, GHF led the heritage conservation field not only in bringing the latest technology and science to world heritage sites but also in building local partnerships that ensure that sites are preserved for the long run. I am very excited to be continuing this critical mission to protect, preserve and sustain the most significant and endangered cultural heritage sites in the developing world.”

For this reason, Dr. Michael plans to double GHF’s efforts in community development. “The way we see it, all preservation is local. You can only truly preserve a heritage site by engaging the local community in the long term.” Dr. Michael also plans to continue the organization’s pioneering work in China, Southeast Asia, India, the Middle East and the Americas. “Economic development around world heritage sites addresses some of the U.N.’s most crucial Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) including poverty alleviation, while instilling pride and self-sufficiency and also inspiring human- and financial investment in heritage conservation, both tangible and intangible, for years to come.”

About Global Heritage Fund
Global Heritage Fund (GHF) is an international conservancy whose mission is to protect, preserve and sustain the most significant and endangered cultural heritage sites in the developing world. GHF utilizes its Preservation by Design® methodology of community-based planning, conservation, development and partnerships to enable long-term preservation and sustainability of global heritage sites. Since 2002, GHF has invested over $30 million and secured $25 million in co-funding for 20 global heritage sites to ensure their sustainable preservation and responsible development.