Events & News

2020 Bard Breakfast to Honor Kay Ciganovic – Friends of George McAneny Founder to Receive Preservation Award

December 31, 2020

Civic leader George McAneny late in life with his great-granddaughter, whom we know as Kay Ciganovic, the founder of Friends of George McAneny and the Archive Project’s 2020 Preservation Award winner. Kay and her mother lived with Mr. and Mrs. McAneny in Princeton, New Jersey during the first year and a half of Kay’s life. | Courtesy of Kay Ciganovic

The Archive Project’s seventeenth annual Bard Birthday Breakfast Benefit steps boldly into the virtual realm, a first for the beloved event, on December 17, 2020. Kay Ciganovic, the founder of Friends of George McAneny, will receive the Archive Project’s Preservation Award for her efforts across multiple years to lift up and celebrate the legacy of an overlooked civic figure, her great-grandfather, George McAneny. Ciganovic’s efforts in building a coalition (in a manner very much reminiscent of McAneny’s collaborative style) highlight the many facets of McAneny’s career in New York City. Those efforts dovetailed with NYPAP-supported research on McAneny by doctoral candidate Charles Starks.

McAneny held a variety of posts in his lifetime, growing ever more into a preservationist as the decades unfolded, and he played a major role in the preservation efforts that have spared Federal Hall, Castle Clinton (he drew the particular ire of Robert Moses during this battle), and City Hall for posterity. McAneny also co- founded the National Trust for Historic Preservation. Ciganovic famously stood with her great-grandmother, George McAneny’s widow, Marjorie Jacobi McAneny, in a photograph capturing the moment when the plaque embedded in the wall of Federal Hall honoring McAneny was unveiled after his death in the 1950s.