Idaho Treasure Award
This award was created in 1995 and recognizes living retired University of Idaho faculty, staff and/or family members who, in their retirement years, have made significant achievements in volunteerism and leadership to the University.
Nominations for this award are due to the Office of Alumni Relations by April 1 each year. For more information, please contact the office at 208-885-6154 or firstname.lastname@example.org
D. Nels Reese
On November 16, the University of Idaho honored alumnus and preservation advocate D. Nels Reese with the 2017 Idaho Treasure Award.
Awarded by the U of I Retirees Association, the Idaho Treasure Award recognizes retired university faculty and staff and their family members for contributions of leadership and service to the university.
A native of Boise, Reese graduated from U of I in 1962 with a bachelor’s degree in architecture. He went on to receive a master’s in urban planning from City College of New York. His résumé includes eight years spent in the Army National Guard, five years as art director for Army in Europe magazine while living in Heidelberg Germany, and seven years as director of facilities at U of I.
Reese taught architecture at U of I for more than 20 years. His focus was primarily on urban design and planning and he led his students on numerous field trips, including to New York, to see architecture at work. A longtime public servant, Reese was appointed to Moscow’s Planning and Zoning Commission in 1996, a post he still holds today.
“Nels is a tireless advocate for preservation through his efforts to cultivate public awareness about the importance of our historic resources to Moscow’s quality of life and their stewardship for future generations,” said Wendy R. McClure, Professor Emeritus in the College of Art & Architecture. “He routinely shares his knowledge about Moscow’s architectural history and historic neighborhoods with University of Idaho and Moscow communities.”
In 2007, Reese led a group of fourth-year architecture and landscape students in planning the Legacy Crossing Urban Renewal District, an ongoing project to develop and beautify 20 acres of industrial land in the heart of Moscow. Reese is passionate about architecture — especially in Moscow and Idaho communities — and spends countless hours dedicated to preserving and sharing his knowledge and passion for architecture. Reese has been a member of the Moscow Historic Preservation Commission since 2009, serving as the chair from 2009-13. He holds the position of vice chair.
Reese retired from U of I in 2008, but he continues to serve the university and the state. He has been a participant in a project to compile a list of Idaho’s 100 most significant buildings for the Society of Architectural Historians. He also leads walking tours of Moscow, the U of I campus and New York City. He is an active member of the University of Idaho Retirees Association and served on the board of directors for three years. Reese continues to mentor many of his former students, making a point to visit them wherever he travels.