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Heritage Heroes!
Heritage Stewardship Award Program
Heritage Programs introduces the Heritage Stewardship Recognition Program. People all over the state are doing good things to preserve Oregon's historic resources. The Heritage Stewardship certificate is designed to recognize those people and publicize their conscientious efforts.

Featured Heritage Hero
John and Diana Van Driesche





















John and Diana Van Driesche
A Talbot couple has been recognized with an Oregon Heritage Stewardship Certificate for their efforts to preserve an important archaeological site.
In 2009, the Oregon State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO) received a phone call from private property owners Diana and John Van Driesche of Talbot. While constructing an emergency entrance into the basement of their home, the couple had found Native American artifacts and a burned feature beneath the surface. 
The Van Driesches promptly halted construction and contacted the State Archaeologist at the SHPO.  Later, volunteers from the Oregon Archaeological Society; students from Oregon State University, the University of Oregon, and various community colleges; and professional archaeologists from the Association of Oregon Archaeologists, private archaeological firms, federal agencies, state agencies, and Tribes, conducted archaeological testing. 
The investigations found basalt, obsidian and chert tools and debitage, and remnants of a hearth. (Debitage is waste material leftover from making tools.) Recent radiocarbon dates indicate the site was occupied 5,500 to 9,100 years ago. 
"Thanks to Diana and John’s watchful eye and thoughtful decision to contact the State Historic Preservation Office an important Native American site was preserved for future generations," says Nancy Nelson, a Heritage Programs archaeologist with the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department.  "We thank them for their contribution to protecting Oregon’s cultural heritage."
The Heritage Stewardship Recognition program was initiated by Heritage Programs of the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department to raise the profile of Oregonians who go the extra mile in protecting the state’s heritage.
Heritage Programs of Oregon Parks and Recreation Department includes the Oregon Commission on Historic Cemeteries, the Oregon Heritage Commission, the Oregon Historic Trails Advisory Council and the State Historic Preservation Office. For more information, contact Kyle Jansson at heritage.info@state.or.us or 503-986-0673.

Previous Heritage Heroes

Erica French
Michael Dryden
Stacy Schneyder, Meris Mullaley and ICF Jones & Stokes 
Chad Beam, Dave Couch, Corey Level, Zach Smith and Beam & Couch Excavation Company 
Cascade Recycling
Winemakers Investment Properties LLC                   
Western Oregon University and Willamette University Students

Bethel School District

Heritage Hero Homepage

Heritage Excellence Awards
Learn about the annual Heritage Excellence Awards