Brian Whetstone is a Ph.D. candidate whose research focuses on the intersection between historic preservation, real estate, and the urban crisis of the 1960s and 1970s. His dissertation project examines preservation organizations in nearby Springfield, Massachusetts, and throughout the state of Massachusetts to explore how preservationists prioritized private property ownership as a method of community development to battle urban decline. Brian also holds a certificate in public history with a concentration in historic preservation.
A native of Omaha, Nebraska, Brian grew fascinated with the ways communities grapple with preserving and connecting with the urban built environment. To further this exploration, Brian recently worked with a team of fellow graduate students to produce a panel for the Humanities Action Lab's traveling exhibit focusing on the ways urban renewal, community memory, and environmental injustice intersect in Springfield, Massachusetts. The exhibit is scheduled to be shown in Springfield in Fall 2021.
Brian graduated with a BA in History from Hastings College in Hastings, Nebraska in 2018. Brian has worked with the National Park Service's Northeast Regional Office to commemorate the centennial of the passage of the Nineteenth Amendment and with Restoration Exchange Omaha to promote historic preservation in the Omaha, Nebraska metro area. Additionally, Brian has served as a public history consultant for the Washington, D.C. Preservation League, the Architectural Offices of Omaha, Nebraska, and for Omaha Public Schools. Brian also serves as co-chair of the National Council of Public History's New Professional and Student Committee and as a co-chair of the History Department's Graduate History Association.