UNCG Campus Weekly

Campus Weekly is published each Wednesday when classes are in session. In the summer, it is published biweekly.

Jo Leimenstoll leads Interior Architecture students to top place at historic Woodlawn

Portrait of Jo LeimenstollJo Ramsay Leimenstoll (Interior Architecture) led a team of students in the All American House competition at historic Woodlawn, near Mount Vernon. They won first prize for their interior design in the family parlor of the grand home, and third prize for the first floor passageway. The student’s intensive design work began in the fall semester – and is on view now at the historic site in Alexandria, Va. The unique showcase event is a collaboration of MADE: In America and the National Trust. The Woodlawn estate, carved by George Washington from his Mount Vernon estate, is run by the National Trust. An article about the competition was in last Friday’s Washington Post.

Her graduate students can get a certificate in historic preservation or specialize in it. Advanced undergraduates can take some of the historic preservation related courses too. “A lot of that comes because I am very engaged in historic preservation,” she explains. “I’m a preservation architect.”

Additionally, Leimenstoll was invited to speak at the Renwick Gallery in Washington, DC, days before she and the students filled the Woodlawn rooms with their design work. The gallery, part of the Smithsonian Institution, was premiering an exhibition on the nineteenth-century woodwork craftsmanship of North Carolina’s Thomas Day, on whom she is an expert. A Washington Post piece on the exhibition is here.

She co-authored with Patricia Phillips Marshall the book “Thomas Day: Master Craftsman and Free Man of Color.”

She is chair of the National Alliance of Preservation Commissions Board of Directors, and she is the immediate past chair of the Preservation North Carolina Board of Directors.

As historic preservation coordinator for UNCG’s Department of Interior Architecture, she draws to our campus students who are inspired to preserve historic structures.

“I believe that the historic built environment is profoundly important to communities and individuals because it provides us with a sense of identity and orientation,” she has said. “Knowing who we were allows us to ask questions about who we are and who we are becoming.”

See full story about her students’ award-winning work at Woodlawn, in UNCG Now.