News Flash


Posted on: February 7, 2024

2024 de Avilés Award recipient named

Roy Hunt Headshot

Historic Preservation advocate, leader Roy Hunt to be recognized

The St. Augustine City Commission will honor Roy Hunt with one of the city's highest awards, the de Avilés Award. The presentation of his award will be scheduled at a later time.

Mayor Nancy Sikes-Kline nominated Hunt for his decades of commitment serving the St. Augustine community through historic preservation boards and entities at the state level and for his work locally as a founding member of the University of Florida Historic St. Augustine, Inc. (UFHSA).

Beginning in 1976, Hunt developed a specialty in Historic Preservation Law, leading him to be appointed to the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s Board of Advisory and to serve as President of the Florida Trust for Historic Preservation.  He also began teaching at the University of Florida’s College of Law, where would spend almost fifty years in academia before retiring in 1998.

Among his many accomplishments, Hunt was appointed by Governors Graham and Chiles to the Historic St. Augustine Preservation Board and served as Chair of the legislatively created Historic Preservation Advisory Council. 

While serving the Florida Secretary of State, upon his retirement, as Special Advisor for International Affairs, Historic Preservation, and Cultural Resources, he also was a member of the Florida Arts Council and chaired The Grove Advisory Council, the Great Floridians Committee, and the Mission San Luis Board.

As a founding board member of UFHSA, Hunt was instrumental in the implementation of the University of Florida’s strategic plan that laid the foundation for coordinated planning, programming, and management of the historic properties in St. Augustine, owned by the state of Florida.  Today, Roy remains on the board of UFHSA as Vice Chair.

Hunt graduated Yale University Law School and received a Master of Laws degree in 1962. He currently serves as Distinguished Service Professor of Law Emeritus at the University of Florida.

The de Avilés Award

The de Avilés Award was initiated by the commission in 1988 and, since 2002, its presentation has been limited to one per year.  Since its inception the award has been presented 36 times to recipients who have been “...identified in the field of public service or those well-known and respected by the citizenry who have dedicated and honorable service to the community of St. Augustine and St. Johns County.”

A nomination for the de Avilés Award originates with a member of the city commission that is presented to the city manager who then puts it before the entire commission for confirmation.

Questions and media inquiries may be directed to Melissa Wissel, Communications Director, at 904-293-3307.

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