CHICAGO – Main Street America announced John Bry, Program Coordinator at Main Street Oakland County (MSOC) in Michigan, as the 2023 Mary Means Leadership Award recipient.
This prestigious award is the organization’s top honor recognizing individuals who demonstrate outstanding leadership in the field of comprehensive preservation-based economic development and commercial district revitalization. The award highlights the impact of these individuals and amplifies the critical role that leaders play in shaping the Main Street Movement.
Nominated by colleagues, and selected by a national jury, Bry is being recognized for his ability to develop innovative ideas, build organizational capacity of local programs and leaders and lead through understanding as program coordinator.
At 19, Bry founded the Champaign County Preservation Alliance, Ohio’s first county-wide preservation organization. After receiving degrees in historic preservation and conservation, Bry embarked on a career establishing, managing and coordinating Main Street programs in Indiana, Ohio, Missouri, Pennsylvania and Michigan.
His notable accomplishments include securing $600,000 of a $1.7 million commercial and public space project in Flora, Illinois; advising Kendallville, Indiana, in securing a $2 million PreservINg Main Street grant to transform the community’s historic downtown and providing guidance on the establishment of the Cape Girardeau Main Street program, which later earned a Great American Main Street Award and continues to be nationally and state accredited.
“Main Street coordinators play vital roles as conveners, mentors and advocates,” said Hannah White, Interim President and CEO at Main Street America. “John Bry is exemplary in these roles and many more. John’s passion for historic preservation and ability to rally local leaders around the Main Street Approach have made a lasting impact on countless communities.”
Info from Main Street America