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William Dupont
Hemingway home in Cuba
Professor William A. Dupont and the restored Ernest Hemingway
home in Havana, Cuba

Preservationist comes to UTSA architecture college

By James M. Benavides
Public Affairs Specialist

(April 9, 2007)--The UTSA College of Architecture and the San Antonio Conservation Society will formally welcome Professor William A. Dupont at a reception hosted by the society at the historic Steves Homestead, 509 King William St. at 5 p.m., Tuesday, April 10.

Dupont, who recently was named to the UTSA San Antonio Conservation Society Endowed Professorship in Honor of Mary Ann Blocker Castleberry, is known for his work in historic preservation. Castleberry was president of the organization from 1977 to 1979. Dupont replaces professor Eugene George, FAIA, who held the seat from its creation through 2003.

Dupont's most recent work includes leading a team of U.S. experts to assist in the restoration of Ernest Hemingway's Finca Vigia home in Havana, Cuba.

He came to UTSA at the start of the spring 2007 semester and divides his time between teaching and fulfilling obligations as the chief architect for the National Trust for Historic Preservation.

"San Antonio is a tremendously historic place and it's a great honor to be the San Antonio Conservation Society's endowed professor," said Dupont. "Creating this position at UTSA shows a great deal of foresight from the Conservation Society. They continue to work as advocates for historic preservation. To be connected with them and the College of Architecture at UTSA makes this a special opportunity for me."

In his new position, Dupont will teach the historic preservation portion of the graduate curriculum and develop a nationally recognized program for students to earn certificates in historic preservation.

"Professor Dupont is an outstanding appointment for the College of Architecture," said Julius Gribou, dean of the UTSA College of Architecture. "He will lead UTSA to a new level of national prominence in historic preservation through his leadership, graduate teaching and research."

According to Gribou, Dupont's historic preservation projects made him a strong candidate for the position. In addition to Finca Vigia, Dupont has conducted restoration projects at Mies van der Rohe's Farnsworth House in Plano, Ill., Philip Johnson's Glass House in New Canaan, Conn., the President Lincoln Cottage in Washington, D.C., and Villa Finale, the former home of San Antonio philanthropist Walter Mathis, in San Antonio, Texas.

"The Conservation Society is very pleased that Bill Dupont has been appointed to the historic preservation professorship we endowed in memory of Mary Ann Blocker Castleberry," said Virginia S. Nicholas, president of the San Antonio Conservation Society. "His knowledge and experience will be a tremendous benefit to the development of the preservation program in the UTSA College of Architecture, which will ultimately assist with the preservation of the San Antonio area's many historic resources."

The San Antonio Conservation Society's written support assisted the college in attaining accreditation from the National Architectural Accreditation Board in 2001. It is now the second-largest architecture program in Texas.

For more information, contact the UTSA College of Architecture at (210) 458-3010.

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