The Distinguished Alumni Award was established by the Alumni Association in 2005 to recognize a distinguished graduate from one of the eight full-time programs. The award is presented at graduation.
Recipients of the award
2012 - Brent Hull, PC '93
2011 - Barbara Hebard, BB '90
2010 - Eva Martin, JM ‘03
2009 - Jock Gifford, JM ’97 & CF ‘01
2008 - Peter Feinmann, CA ‘83
2007 - David Stanwood, Piano ‘79
2006 - James Reid-Cunningham, BB ‘90
2005 - Brian Kelly, CF ‘84
2012 Distinguished Alumni Award
Brent Hull, PC '93
At the 2012 graduation at Old North Church, Alumni Association president Denise Fenoglio, JM' 06 presented the distinguished alumni award to Brent Hull, PC '93. Brent is a 1993 graduate of the Preservation Carpentry program where he studied under Robert Adam. After graduating, he returned to his native Texas and started a company. From a modest beginning, working in his brother’s garage, and a lot of hard work, Brent went on to build the Brent Hull Companies, which now employs over 50 artisans and related staff. He runs a successful construction and consulting firm, is the exclusive millwork provider for the Winterthur museum, has restored historic courthouses in Texas and worked on many private residences including those of Barbara Streisand. Beyond the commercial success, Brent is a prolific writer in the field of traditional interior designs and moldings and has publishing several books. Brent enjoys sharing his knowledge with his customers and the general public on the merits of traditional design and craftsmanship. Story and photo by Bill Rainford, PC '11. More on Brent's visit to NBSS is on Bill's blog here.
2011 Distinguished Alumni Award
Barbara Adams Hebard, BB ’90
At the 2011 graduation ceremony, Ken Gilbert, BB ’10 and a member of the Alumni Council, presented the annual Distinguished Alumni Award to Barbara Hebard. Gilbert’s comments and the acceptance remarks made by Hebard’s husband (Barbara was at a bookbinding conference and unable to attend), painted a picture of a warm and generous professional who has enriched the bookbinding community for decades.
Upon graduation from NBSS in 1990, Barbara was employed by the Boston Athenaeum as a book conservator. During her 18 years at the Athenaeum, she worked on books once owned by many luminaries including George Washington and John Quincy Adams as well as hundreds of other 18th and 19th century imprints and manuscripts. In 2009, she became the conservator of the John J. Burns Library at Boston College. In this special collection library, she is in charge of the preservation and conservation of two hundred and sixty thousand rare books and sixteen million archival items. These are exceptional achievements and any individual who accomplished them is worthy of this award.
But Barbara is known to her colleagues for much more. She is a Fellow of The International Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works, a Professional Associate of The American Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works, a Board Member of The New England Conservation Association and a member of The Guild of Bookworkers and The Association of College and Research Libraries.
Barbara regularly displays her work at shows, lectures, and writes for publications. She has served as an exhibition curator and volunteers her time in many ways in the bookbinding community including as an active member of the North Bennet Street School community where she has served as an Overseer, Chair of the Alumni Steering Committee and a bookbinding program advisor. Barbara maintains a contact list of bookbinding graduates and an email broadcast list. NBSS bookbinding graduates regularly receive emails from her with relevant information ranging from job opportunities to educational opportunities to items for sale. Each year, she stops by the classroom to make new entries in her work-bench genealogy – a document that traces the occupants of every workbench in Bookbinding. For students and graduates, it’s both interesting to learn who preceded you at that bench and a wonderful reminder of the rich legacy of bookbinding graduates.
Barbara’s warmth, thoughtfulness and generosity shape in big and small ways the bookbinding community at NBSS, in Boston and beyond.
Photo: Kerry Burke, Boston College
2010 Distinguished Alumni Award
Eva Martin, JM ‘03
In 2010, Eva Martin moved back to the United States after working for several years in Queensland, Australia where she distinguished herself with her exceptional jewelry designs and fabrication. In the years since her graduation, Eva has won several major awards including the 2006 Saul Bell Design Award Grand Prize for her Carousseling Cuffl inks and she was a fi nalist for the same award in 2009. Eva was the recipient of the 2008 Lapidary Journal Jewelry Arts Award and her sterling silver Queensland Sugar Spoon was designated “Best Memento” in the Tourism Queensland memento competition in 2006.
Unable to attend the presentation, Martin expressed her indebtedness to NBSS in remarks read by Alumni Council Chair, Dennis McCarten, (VM ’06): “At NBSS I began to understand just how deeply satisfying and meaningful a career in craftsmanship could be… I still imagine my pieces will be scrutinized by Ro with her eagle eye and loupe before they leave my bench. It keeps me from producing anything but my best work. I am greatly indebted to both Ro and Jock and to NBSS for a career which is so deeply satisfying —one that makes me smile from ear to ear.”
Rosemary (Ro) Trainor, NBSS Jewelry Instructor remarked, “there are times when we interview candidates for the jewelry program who say “I’m coming here because I want to be like Eva Martin” and I say “Well then move your bed in here, because as a student she was at her bench ALL the time. She was in early and stayed late every single day… she was motivated and focused on what she wanted to achieve and I do believe she would have moved her bed in here if she could have. It was a pleasure to be her instructor.”