Dedman steps down as chair, Sampson takes on top JHT seat
When James Harrod Trust was still a dream, Helen Dedman was there. When a small group dedicated to preservation started meeting and making plans, Helen Dedman was there. When the James Harrod Trust was chartered, Helen Dedman was there.
Dedman was not just there, but serving as the chair this group of like-minded preservationists. For the past 17 years, Dedman has been the chair of James Harrod Trust. This year, she decided it was time to step down and let someone else take over the leadership position, but still serving on the board and working toward the group’s mission.“Historic Preservation is my passion! I believe the preservation of our historic buildings and sites is a type of memorial to those great artisans, craftsman and architects who planned, developed and built structures made to ‘last,’ said Dedman. “We are so fortunate to have structures still standing from the pioneer, antebellum, Victorian and Art Deco eras. Unfortunately, many have been lost which is why the James Harrod Trust for Historic Preservation was formed in 1999-2000. I was elected chair and have proudly served in that position ever since. This year I decided that it was time to ‘pass the torch.’ Jerry Sampson has been elected chair and will serve our organization well. I am still on the board and will stay as active as ever. Please continue to support our efforts in preserving our past.”
Sampson is also a charter board member and a past president and long-time member of the Harrodsburg Historical Society board of directors.“No one can ever take Helen’s place,” said Sampson. “She has served this board and this community tirelessly. Even though she will not be our chair, I know Helen will always be fighting the preservation battles right alongside the rest of the board.”
Highlights of her tenure as chair include the acquisition and repairs of Dedman Drug Store and later the securing a business/new owner for the property; the restoration and new ownership of Rocky Point; numerous educational programs, such as rock fence and gravestone cleaning workshops, events like the Cemetery Tour, Awards Dinners, and Porch tours; printing of several books; ; “I cannot praise Helen’s work as chair enough. She has lead us through our greatest accomplishments and helped us overcome our lowest points,” said Amalie Preston, also a JHT charter member.
Dedman remains on the board, serving as past chair. Along with Sampson, the remaining board members include Preston, co-chair; Ron Reed, treasurer, and Nancy Ross Stallings, secretary.