Messaging Guide

NAPC's Messaging Guide for Local Preservation Programs was implemented as part of the organization's Strategic Plan update and development of our Core Values and Principles Statement in 2020. One goal of the Strategic Plan was to be a leading voice on local historic preservation programs and issues at the federal, state, and local levels. As part of this goal, NAPC wanted to offer advocacy support to our members and be a trusted source of credible information.

In 2022, NAPC hired Cindy Olnick of Cindy Olnick Communications to research what the biggest issues were facing local preservation programs. Her findings identified three major areas where local preservation program staff needed support. 1. Conveying the value of historic preservation, 2. Advocating for more effective preservation policies and practices, and  3. Explaining the local preservation process.

These issues boiled down to a communication problem. When implemented, the Messaging Guide restores communication channels and builds support for preservation. It is filled with communication strategies, definitions, and ideas to help preservationists advocate for preservation more effectively. Our hope is that local preservation programs use the Guide as a daily, weekly, or monthly resource for sample language, examples, case studies, or contacts in the field, to help with the important work they are doing in their community.

We also understand that new issues will arise and new solutions will be developed, so we designed the Messaging Guide to be a resource we can update periodically. This will ensure that it remains relevant and helpful to NAPC members and beyond. If you have ideas on how to make the Guide more effective, or you have a case study to share, please email

Download the Guide


As a member of the National Alliance of Preservation Commissions, you become part of a national network of historic preservation commissions, boards of architectural review, staff, local and state preservation nonprofits, and residents of historic districts who value their historic resources.

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NAPC is honored to serve as a national voice for local preservation. This would not be possible without support from members and partners around the country. Learn more about how you can further our mission to build strong local preservation programs and leaders through education, training and advocacy.