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Queens Chronicle

Forest Hills preservationist honored

Historic Districts Council award for Michael Perlman

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Posted: Thursday, May 29, 2014 10:30 am

Forest Hills and Rego Park preservationist Michael Perlman can now call himself an award winner.

The Historic Districts Council, a nonprofit advocacy group aimed at preserving historic buildings and neighborhoods throughout the city, will honor Perlman with its 2014 Grassroots Preservation Award at a June 4 ceremony in Brooklyn Heights.

Perlman, of Forest Hills, is the chairman of the Rego-Forest Preservation Council, the organization he founded in 2006 to celebrate Forest Hills’ 100th anniversary.

He said the HDC’s honor will only inspire him to further promote the preservation of his community.

“I felt honored that I was recognized for my dedication to historic preservation and community affairs largely in Forest Hills and Rego Park for nearly 10 years,” Perlman said. “I also felt inspired to become an even stronger community advocate.”

The goal of the Rego-Forest Preservation Council, according to Perlman, is to preserve and commemorate the architectural and cultural history of the area by advocating for city landmark and National Register of Historic Places status for certain properties.

Over the years, the 31-year-old’s group helped the First Presbyterian Church of Newtown and the Rego Park Jewish Center receive placement in the National Register of Historic Places program.

Additionally, Perlman aided in the effort to have the Forest Park Carousel and Sunnyside Gardens designated as city landmarks.

While his group may be successful throughout Central Queens, he is calling on Rego Park and Forest Hills residents to help him in his effort to embrace and enhance the buildings, shops and sites that give the communities their unique feel.

“It is my hope that this award ceremony will help generate awareness for the need to preserve our noteworthy and character-enriching sites,” he said. “Stretches of Forest Hills and Rego Park offer a unique sense of place considering preservation, and need to be recognized, preserved, restored, and creatively reused.”

Perlman said he does not know who nominated him for the award or how he was chosen, just that he received a letter in the mail informing him of the honor.

The HDC’s awards ceremony will begin at 6:45 p.m. at Grace Church at 254 Hicks St. and is open to the public, with tickets costing $30.

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