Advocate Editorial Board opinion: Thank you for preserving Victoria's history

By the Advocate Editorial Board
Dec. 4, 2012 at 6:04 a.m.

Victoria is a city full of caring. Our community is inundated with organizations aimed at assisting resident with everything from domestic violence to job training and literacy. And each of these groups are guided by community leaders.

Gary Dunnam, one of Victoria's longstanding community organization leaders, is planning to retire after 28 years combined of serving as the executive director of Victoria Preservation Inc. and director of the Victoria County Heritage Department.

Dunnam made the announcement of his retirement plans on Nov. 26, and his request was accepted by the Victoria County Commissioners Court that morning. He will remain a member of the Victoria County Historical Commission and serve as co-chairman of the marker committee within that commission to identify historical markers in town. He will also keep his position as secretary on El Camino Real board of directors.

We are grateful to Dunnam for all the hard work he has put into preserving the history of the Victoria area, and we are pleased that he will not be stepping back completely. As Dunnam said himself, there is still a lot of history to document in Victoria, and we are glad he will continue to take part in and support the effort he has been leading for decades.

We believe that the history of a community is an important factor in its development. It is not just a piece of who we were. It also has influence on what our city can become, and Victoria has done a lot of reconnecting with its history.

We applaud Dunnam for his part in this process, from the renovation of the 1892 courthouse, which he calls his proudest accomplishment, to the work he will do with historical markers. Each contribution, not matter how big or small, helped preserve a piece of Victoria's heritage.

After all the hard work and leadership Dunnam has provided, we hope Victoria Preservation Inc. and the Victoria County Heritage Department will find someone with an equal level of passion to replace him in these key leadership positions. Above all, we hope to see the preservation and documentation of Victoria's history continue for years to come.

Most of all, we want to thank Dunnam for his years of commitment to Victoria. Thank you for helping us preserve our identity. We wish you enjoy your retirement and many more years of happiness and life.

This editorial reflects the views of the Victoria Advocate's editorial board.



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