Incoming professor Sara Bronin, a leading voice on historic preservation law and related land use practices, was recently nominated by the Biden administration to chair the U.S. Advisory Council on Historic Preservation. The council advises the president and congress on decisions and policies that promote the preservation and enhancement of national historic resources.
Bronin officially joins the Cornell faculty on July 1 as an associate member of the Law School faculty and as a professor in the Department of City and Regional Planning at the College of Architecture, Art, and Planning. As a professor, policymaker, and pending council chair, she continues a career devoted to creating and preserving sites significant to U.S. heritage and shaping policies that Bronin hopes will encompass “all aspects of the American story.”
“I’m honored that President Biden nominated me for this position,” shares Bronin. “If appointed, I hope to help ensure that our country’s preservation policies enable inclusive and joyous places — while at the same time advancing more sustainable and equitable transportation, energy infrastructure, and housing. I’ll also work to increase public engagement with preservation issues, something that is core to Cornell’s mission of providing innovative, interdisciplinary historic preservation education.”
Bronin, a Mexican-American architect, attorney, and policymaker specializing in property, land use, historic preservation, and climate change, comes to Cornell from the University of Connecticut where she held an endowed chair position in real property law and led an energy and environmental law center. Currently, she leads Desegregate Connecticut, a coalition that successfully shepherded landmark zoning legislation at the state level, serves as an advisor for the National Trust for Historic Preservation, and is a member of the board for Latinos in Heritage Conservation.
As the nomination and appointment processes advance, Bronin will begin teaching at Cornell with a cross-listed class on historic preservation law this fall, and she is finalizing her forthcoming book, Key to the City.