Erin Tobin.jpg

Erin Tobin

KEESEVILLE — A well-known expert in the preservation community has been named the new Executive Director of Adirondack Architectural Heritage (AARCH), the private, nonprofit organization educating and advocating for the built environment and communities for New York State’s Adirondack region.

Erin M. Tobin will leave her position as Vice President for Policy and Preservation at the Preservation League of New York State to fill the leadership role of Steven Engelhart, who will retire at the end of 2021.


The announcement was made Monday by AARCH’s Board Chairman Dean Melville.

“We are delighted to have Erin Tobin join AARCH as its new executive director,” Melville said in a news release.

“She brings leadership and program development expertise to the organization. With her intimate knowledge of preservation issues and resources, in particular within New York State, she will build upon the work of Steven Engelhart who has nurtured the organization over the last 27 years, bringing it to its place of prominence, with programs in public education, advocacy and technical assistance for the built environment and communities throughout the Adirondacks.


For more than 20 years, Tobin has built a distinguished career in preservation, with early experience in Philadelphia, Boston, and New York City.

Key positions include Director of Preservation Services for the Historic Albany Foundation, Albany, NY; Executive Director of the James Marston Fitch Charitable Foundation, New York City, and currently at the Preservation League of New York State, Albany.

At the Preservation League, she directs public policy and technical service programs across New York State’s 62 counties; leads a statewide preservation policy agenda; advocates for effective preservation policies at local, state, and national levels; and develops partnerships and new program opportunities to respond to statewide and regional preservation challenges. Tobin holds a B.A. degree cum laude, in Architectural History from Binghamton University and a M.S. degree in Historic Preservation from the University of Pennsylvania.

“I am honored and delighted to serve as executive director of Adirondack Architectural Heritage (AARCH) and to work with the AARCH Board, staff, members and the larger Adirondack community to preserve and celebrate the historic places within the Adirondack region,” Tobin said.

“From reviewing Sacred Sites grants projects in the Adirondacks while at the New York Landmarks Conservancy, to the countless collaborations between AARCH and the Preservation League, I have loved working with the organization. After years of admiration for AARCH’s work, I look forward to building upon its rich legacy into the future.”

The public search for the ED position began in January by a board committee chaired by Andrew Prescott, past board chairman.


Tobin will begin her new position on Nov. 1.

“I have known Erin for nearly 15 years through her good work at the Preservation League and know her to be passionate about historic preservation, a dynamic leader and a great collaborator, someone with outstanding training and experience all a perfect fit for leading AARCH into the future,” Engelhart said.

“She is also very familiar with the Adirondack region and the work of AARCH, so she will be able to bring her considerable talents to bear very quickly and capably.”

About Adirondack Architectural Heritage (AARCH): AARCH is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, recognized nationally for its leadership and accomplishments in historic preservation by the National Trust for Historic Preservation. It has over 1,500 members from through the Adirondack region, 38 states and four countries; a full-time staff of four; an active 17-member Board of Directors; and an engaged Advisory Council, all dedicated to ensuring that the region’s history and architecture are preserved to help local communities flourish.

For information on specific programs, visit

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