May 19, 2014

VSU Receives The Georgia Trust Award

VALDOSTA – The Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation has presented Valdosta State University with the Excellence in Rehabilitation Award for the renovation of Ashley Hall.

Headquartered in Atlanta, The Georgia Trust is a nonprofit organization organized in 1969 to recognize and celebrate the preservation of buildings throughout the state.

“This statewide award is significant for Valdosta State as it recognizes how VSU cares for and protects its historic buildings,” said Robert Tindall, associate director of facilities planning at VSU. “Ashley Hall is a building that represents a significant part of history for our institution.  To paraphrase what our late president, Dr. Hugh Bailey, is noted for saying, ‘Valdosta State is the crown jewel of the University System of Georgia’ and Ashley Hall is one of our diamonds.”

The university's third oldest building, Ashley Hall was constructed in 1921. The original building contained a dining room and kitchen and the rotunda was used for numerous social functions and in 1942 was dedicated as a chapel.

Named for former Valdosta Mayor C.R. Ashley, who served from 1900 to 1904, the 26,000-square-foot building has undergone many renovations in the past. Recent improvements represent a complete restoration of the building.

The recent $5.5 million restoration project took two years to complete and now houses the Department of History and Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies. VSU hosted a ribbon cutting to celebrate the restoration of Ashley Hall in November 2012.

This past year VSU was awarded the Georgia Board of Regents’ Sustainability Award for Historic Preservation, which is presented annually to an institution that excels in preserving and restoring a campus building to or exceeding federal and state historic restoration standards and guidelines.

“These awards are indeed an honor for Valdosta State and we will continue to be the protectors of Ashley Hall and all of our historic buildings,” said Tindall.