California Archaeological Site Stewardship Program—2014 Best Practices in Site Preservation Award
The Archaeological Institute of America is pleased to present its 2014 Award for Best Practices in Site Preservation to the California Archaeological Site Stewardship Program (CASSP) for its grassroots efforts to involve and train local communities in the preservation of archaeological sites in California.
CASSP, a statewide program directed by the Society for California Archaeology, trains local volunteers to visit assigned sites on public lands regularly and to report the conditions there to the local supervising archaeologist. By regularly monitoring sites, CASSP ensures that any potential problems are detected early and can be corrected quickly, thus limiting the extent of damage. CASSP operates under the philosophy that public lands belong to all of us and that we therefore need to find a responsible way to engage the public in site protection. Trained site stewards provide an additional interface between the recreational user and the agency archaeologists so that archaeological resources can be protected from harm and managed for future generations. Since the program’s inception in 1999, nearly 1,400 people have participated in 75 CASSP workshops at locations across the state.
The Archaeological Institute of America hopes that CASSP’s efforts in community stewardship will serve as an inspiration to others as they look for innovative ways to preserve our archaeological heritage. The California Archaeological Site Stewardship Program fully merits the 2014 Award for Best Practices in Site Preservation for its exemplary work.