From the beginning, OHA engaged residents, policymakers, elected officials and others in exploring strategies to preserve Oakland’s irreplaceable cultural and architectural heritage. Activities sponsored by the organization focus largely on educational, outreach and advocacy programs. Each summer our award winning walking tours introduce hundreds of people to Oakland’s diverse architectural, cultural and natural heritage. These tours bring history alive and help people explore Oakland’s vibrant and history-filled neighborhoods.
Each year, to honor those who are helping preserve Oakland’s history, whether it is the restoration of homes and commercial buildings, serving as preservation advocates, or preserving an important cultural heritage, OHA presents its annual Partners in Preservation Awards. Our monthly lectures series brings outstanding preservationists, historians, architects, and cultural leaders to discuss important preservation issues with members and the public. One of the key roles OHA plays in the city is to voice citizen support the protection of Oakland’s historic resources.
The words of Beth Bagwell, one of the founders of the Oakland Heritage Alliance, ring as true today as they did when first published in our inaugural 1981 newsletter:
"OHA cares about the Oakland of yesterday because we care about the Oakland of tomorrow. The environment we live in today has been given to us from the past: the buildings that remain, the layout of the streets, the ethnic character of our neighborhoods, the forgotten creeks, and the lake that still forms the centerpiece of our city. The Oakland of today is the result of what Oaklanders of yesterday built or demolished, fostered or neglected. This is our inheritance. What we do with it is our choice."
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Charles Bucher, Tom Debley, Alison Finlay, Mary Harper, Tom Haw, Neil Heyden, Kathryn Hughes, Irina Itsekson, Daniel Levy, Amelia Marshall,
and Naomi Schiff
President: Tom Debley
Vice President: Alison Finlay
Secretary: Charles Bucher
Treasurer: Mary Harper