Guardian Award

Michigan Heritage Guardian Award

The Michigan Alliance for the Conservation of Cultural Heritage has created this award to recognize outstanding accomplishments of individuals or organizations in the preservation of cultural heritage in the state of Michigan. The Michigan Alliance for the Conservation of Cultural Heritage encompasses preservation efforts across all cultural heritage organizations including historical societies, archives, libraries, museums and other organizations that hold or care for Michigan cultural heritage from landscape to objects, paper records to historic buildings.

The Michigan Alliance for the Conservation of Cultural Heritage is a statewide 501(c)(3) organization composed of libraries, archives, museums, historical societies and preservation networks that was founded in October 1988 with the support of the Michigan Humanities Council.

The purpose is to promote the protection and preservation of Michigan’s cultural and humanities resources for the enjoyment, education and benefit of present and future generations. Cultural resources include archival materials, records, objects, artifacts of every day life, historic sites, buildings and landscapes held privately or publicly or collected by libraries, archives and museums. The Alliance’s efforts are unique because it unites the broadest interests representing cultural heritage in Michigan.

This Heritage Guardian Award seeks to recognize the efforts of countless people and organizations to “save the past for the future generations” so that our history will not be lost, will not fade, but will remain a vital part of the state resources, which attract visitors from all over the world. Deadline for submission of nomination is March 15 every other year (even-numbered years).

What is Conservation of Cultural Heritage?

Actions taken to minimize deterioration of objects (digital or physical) through proper storage, treatments to arrest or prevent physical or chemical damage, and the retention of information content.

Anyone may submit a nomination:

Nominations are due by March 15, 2018. Nominees should meet the following criteria:

  • Projects should have been completed within the past two years.
  • The project involves collections, sites, or objects that are part of Michigan’s cultural heritage and that are located within the state.
  • The work meets currently accepted standards for conservation.
Eligible projects may include:
  • Conservation of objects or documents, including works of art, scientific, or archaeological collections, historic sites, historic objects, photographs, etc. Award-winning projects will involve professional conservators, historical architects, or other trained specialists, or efforts by non-professionals that imply currently accepted standards of treatment appropriate for the materials conserved.
  • Public education promoting cultural heritage conservation, providing training in conservation techniques, or raising awareness of the value of protecting Michigan’s cultural resources.
  • Advocacy of the conservation of cultural resources through political process, working with professional organizations, or with communities.
  • Research resulting in advances in methods and techniques for conservation of materials.
  • Other activities or programs that advance the conservation of the collections, sites, and objects that embody Michigan’s cultural heritage.

Projects that are not eligible:

  • Preservation of natural features and habitats.
  • Projects that primarily involve interpretation of the past, such as exhibits, plays, books, tours, or education about history.
  • Employers of currently serving MACCH Award Committee members are not eligible for institutional awards.
  • Currently serving MACCH Board members are not eligible for individual awards.

The deadline for 2018 is March 15.

To nominate a project, see the Guardian Award Application and Informational Brochure.

Send questions and nominations to

Past Awards