Proven Experience & Expertise

Experience Counts. The preservation of historic places and buildings can be both very gratifying and very frustrating for development professionals, government officials and non-profit organizations. These three sectors are the primary drivers of preservation in the United States. I bring the lessons I’ve learned over more than two decades of experience in the field to clients working across all these sectors and specialize in bringing partners together for successful projects. Specifically, I provide customizable assistance to:

  • Real Estate Development Professionals
  • Local, state and federal government officials engaged in preservation-based planning and development
  • Non-profit organizations engaged in advocacy to preserve historic buildings and places

I have a passion for the process of breathing new life into historic downtowns and neighborhoods and putting together the real estate deals that make that possible. I combine that passion with the drive and patience necessary to create long-term success. I also bring the ability to develop the relationships and tools necessary to be successful. Over the last 24 years I have put my abilities to work in the following ways:
• Worked with four city and county government administrations, citizens, non-profit groups, businesses and media outlets to communicate the important role of historic preservation in economic development activities.
• Worked with the City of Knoxville, Regal Cinemas, design professionals and the National Trust for Historic Preservation to incorporate historic structures into the construction of a new $11.5 million downtown multi-screen theater. The project included the use of New Market and Historic Preservation Tax Credits and resulted in the retention of additional retail and restaurant development in the historic buildings.
• Managed the restoration of eleven historic structures and directed the marketing and sale of those properties.
• Developed contacts at the local, state and national level that can be brought to the table for development projects.
• Worked with developers, government officials, lenders and economic development professionals to facilitate the development of residential and retail projects in downtown Knoxville and surrounding communities.
• Facilitated the relationship between the National Trust for Historic Preservation and the Historic Tennessee Theatre Foundation that resulted in $6 million in New Market and Historic Preservation Tax Credits being invested in the restoration of the theatre.
• Managed and facilitated the growth of the local preservation organization as its budget grew by 500% and created an Endangered Properties Fund with over $250,000 in assets.
• Expanded Knox Heritage’s real estate program to include construction, preservation easements, Historic Tax Credit consulting, National Register nominations and preservation planning for real estate developers and local governments.
• Led Knox Heritage’s successful $1.3 million capital campaign to acquire and restore Historic Westwood as the organization’s headquarters and Regional Center for Historic Preservation.
• Certified as a Historic Real Estate Development Professional by the National Development Council.
• I am a highly self-motivated professional with excellent writing, editing, public speaking, communication and public relations skills; proven abilities in planning and management of programs, publications, media relations, special events, and training.

Awards and Recognition

• East Tennessee Chapter of the American Institute of Architects inaugural Friend of Architecture Award
• 2014 YWCA Tribute to Women Honoree
• 2000 President’s Citation for Excellence in Historic Preservation – Knox Heritage
• Metropolitan Planning Commission Excellence Awards for Historic Preservation – 1997, 2000 and 2008
• Leadership Knoxville Class of 2001
• CAC Community Leadership Class of 1998

A History of Community Leadership

• National Trust for Historic Preservation Board of Directors
• National Trust for Historic Preservation – Statewide and Local Partners Chairperson and Executive Committee
• Knoxville Executive Women’s Association
• Town Hall East Board of Directors
• Historic Tennessee Theatre Foundation Board of Directors
• Knoxville Botanical Gardens Board of Directors
• Tennessee Stage Company Board of Directors
• Downtown Advisory Committee Technical Assistance Team
• Knox Heritage 500 Block Theater Task Force
• Knox Heritage – Past President
• Tennessee Preservation Trust – Board of Directors and Advocacy Committee Chairperson
• Knoxville Empowerment Zone – Communications Chairperson
• Knoxville Mayor’s Task Force on Historic Preservation
• Knoxville Mayor’s Working Group on Alternative Building Code for Historic Buildings
• Bijou Theatre Board of Directors – Executive Committee
• City of Knoxville Convention Center Advisory Group
• Historic Parkridge Neighborhood Home Tour – Chairperson
• Preservation Action – National Board of Directors
• City of Knoxville Internet Users Task Force
• Economic Ventures – Community Micro Loan Advisory Board
• East Tennessee Community Design Center – Board of Directors
• Knoxville News-Sentinel Community Cornerstone Awards Judge

As the Knox Heritage Director of Preservation Field Services from 2008-2014, I had the honor of working with Kim to expand the work of Knox Heritage to sixteen counties.  Kim’s leadership, tenacity, and entrepreneurial spirit fostered my preservation career.  She’s an invaluable member of any team and I look forward to working with her again in her new consulting venture.

Ethiel Garlington

Executive Director – Historic Macon (GA) Foundation

Leadership, tenacity and entrepreneurial spirit

“Trent has served over 15 years at Knox Heritage and has become an active voice for historic preservation. Under her leadership, Knox Heritage acquired a permanent headquarters at historic Westwood on Kingston Pike. She waged battles both successful and unsuccessful before City Council and County Commission. Knox Heritage became a significant player in preservation.”

Ambassador and Former Knoxville Mayor Victor Ashe – Knoxville News Sentinel

Track Record of Success