Hays County Courthouse, San Marcos, TX (February 13, 2020) — The Texas Historical Commission presented Hays County Historical Commission Chair Kate Johnson with the John Ben Shepperd County Historical Commission Leadership Award at its recent REAL PLACES, Preserving Historic Texas 2020 Conference. Johnson also received the award in 2010.
“Congratulations to Kate Johnson on this prestigious award,” County Judge Ruben Becerra said. “Her efforts to preserve the history and tell the stories of all the people of Hays County has not gone unnoticed.”
Precinct 1 Commissioner Debbie Gonzales Ingalsbe congratulated Johnson, saying “This is a well-deserved award in recognition of Kate Johnson, who has done so much for Hays County in preserving our wonderful history.”
The award is named for former Texas Secretary of State John Ben Shepperd, who following his retirement from law founded the Texas Historical Marker program.
Historical Commission members gave Johnson a standing ovation as she was recognized for her inspirational leadership and active community involvement. Johnson is the driving force behind such projects as the restoration of the Kyle Railroad Depot and Heritage Center, the 1884 Hays County Jail, and the Katherine Ann Porter Literacy Center.
“I am honored to receive this prestigious award,” Johnson said. “My sincere appreciation goes out to the dedicated members of the Hays County Historical Commission. Their commitment as volunteers in preserving and protecting the history of Hays County plays an integral part in my receiving this distinguished award from the Texas Historical Commission. I’m also grateful to all the members of the Commissioners Court for their continuing support of our efforts.”
Johnson has also recently been appointed to the Board of Directors of Preservation Texas, the only private, nonprofit statewide preservation organization in Texas.