L-R: Local historian and instructor Ty Richardson, Director of Development Dr. Diann Gathright, Vice-Chancellor of Student Affairs Chad Fielding, Director of Community Relations & Business Outreach LeAnn Dilbeck, Director of Educational Opportunity Center Tammy Sherrill, and Chancellor Dr. Phillip. Wilson.2022-06-06 00:00:00
[June 6, 2022 | MENA, Ark.] The Arkansas Natural and Cultural Resources Council (ANCRC) recently notified Dr. Diann Gathright, UARM’s Director of Development, of the approval of a $1,000,000 grant request to complete renovations to two historic buildings on the Waldron campus of UA Rich Mountain.
This is the second phase of renovations to the historic site. One building served as a “home ec” building and the second was the “ag” building before the new high school was constructed. Both buildings were placed on the National Historic Register through the efforts of Ty Richardson, a local historian.
A previous grant of $460,000 was awarded by ANCRC that allowed for interior demolition, restoration of historic windows, and early stages of the roof repair. This latest grant will fund new roofs, install utilities, and will make the buildings useable.
Dr. Gathright explained that the Home Ec building will not only serve as a classroom but also a community building with a kitchenette and AV equipment for classes as well as meeting space for community use. The Ag building will be a classroom and a space for technical classes of interest to local residents and businesses.
UARM Chancellor Dr. Phillip Wilson commended the work of Gathright and Richardson. “Not only is it our goal to enhance opportunities in Scott County but we also strongly advocate for the preservation of historic sites. This grant allows us to accomplish both. There will be multiple generations that will be benefactors of this grant and the efforts of Dr. Gathright and Mr. Richardson.”
The exact timeline for the completed project is yet to be determined but bids will be advertised in June for work to begin as soon as July 2022.
The Arkansas Natural and Cultural Resources Council (ANCRC) was established by the Arkansas Legislature in 1987 by Arkansas Act 729 (now codified as Arkansas Code Annotated 15-12-101 through 15-12-103). The act created the ANCRC to manage and supervise a grants and trust fund for the acquisition, management, and stewardship of state-owned properties acquired or used for ANCRC approved purposes. The grants are funded through the state's real estate transfer tax. The ANCRC consists of eleven voting members. Grants from this fund are for projects that protect and maintain state-owned natural areas, historic sites, and outdoor recreation.
UA Rich Mountain’s mission is to provide transformative education to all learners.