The Association for Preservation Technology International (APT) presented Robert Silman with its highest honor, the Harley J. McKee Award during its 45th Conference, “Preserving the Metropolis,” held at the New York Marriott Marquis in New York City. The award recognizes individuals who have made outstanding contribution to the field of preservation technology.
“Selecting Bob for this award was easy for me. He has worked tirelessly for 50 years providing innovative structural repairs to historic buildings. He is a teacher who shares his knowledge generously, and his pioneering solutions have changed the way engineers approach preservation projects in the United States,” said Joan C. Berkowitz, President of APT. “On top of that he is a really nice person.”
First presented in 1985, this award is named for the late Harley J. McKee (1905-1976), the second president of APT, and a Professor of Architecture, who is most remembered for his 21 year teaching career at Syracuse University. From 1959 to 1966 he served as field supervisor of summer teams for the Historic American Buildings Survey, in 1968 compiling his work and that of others into the text Recording Historic Buildings, first publishing in 1970. His 1973 book Introduction to Early American Masonry, Stone, Brick, Mortar, and Plaster, published by the National Trust for Historic Preservation, was the first to document the history and technology of those building materials in North America for a preservation audience. See the list of past award recipients.