R&LHS notes 2015 award recipients

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The Railway & Locomotive Historical Society awards for 2015 honor outstanding accomplishments in railroad history for senior achievement, article, book, and photography. Recipients were announced this month by R&LHS, which has presented the awards annually since 1982.

The winners are William F. Howes Jr., recipient of the Gerald M. Best Senior Achievement Award; Frank Dewey, recipient of the David P. Morgan Article Award; Blair Kooistra and Joel Jensen, co-recipients of the Fred A. and Jane R. Stindt Photography Award; and Railroaders: Jack Delano’s Homefront Photography, edited by John Gruber, recipient of the George W. and Constance M. Hilton Book Award.

Howes, who lives in Jacksonville, Fla., has a long involvement in railroad history. He joined the R&LHS in 1956. His service includes president from 1994 to 2003. He has coauthored three books on railroading. A civil engineer by education, Howes joined the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad in 1963 and retired from CSX Transportation in 1988 as vice president of research and analysis.

Dewey, of Greenville, S.C., received the award for “The Navies of the Railroads that Became CSX,” a series of six articles in RABO Club News & Notes, with No. 1 published in October 2013. RABO is an organization of retired officers of CSX and predecessor companies. Dewey joined the rail industry in 1969 and retired from CSX after 30 years as director of schedules in the Service Design Department. The next day, he started a second career with Wisconsin Central as superintendent of operations planning; after WC’s purchase by Canadian National, he was in charge of service design for CN’s operations in the U.S. until a second retirement in 2005.

Blair Kooistra, of Fort Worth, Texas, has photographed railroads extensively since high school. He spent his first 10 years after college as a photojournalist. In 1994, he changed careers and became a train dispatcher for BNSF Railway. He is known for his coverage of the Milwaukee Road’s Pacific Coast Extension and BN's Inland Empire He is author, with two others, of Crossroads of the West, a Photographic Look at Fifty Years of Railroading in Utah (Pentrex, 1998). He remains active as a photographer, concentrating on short lines and having twice traveled to Australia where there is still access to facilities and railroaders.

Joel Jensen, who lives in Ely, Nev., has specializing in historical and contemporary railroad related imagery since 1987. His book, Steam: An Enduring Legacy (Norton, 2011), is a stunning collection of photographs from steam railroad operations across the American West. He is co-author with Linda Niemann of Railroad Noir: the American West at the End of the Twentieth Century (Indiana, 2010). He is responsible for 98 photo-essays or articles in railroad publications, and received awards from Nevada, Trains, and American Photographer magazines.

Gruber, of Madison, Wis., a railroad historian and photographer, was a founder and the first president (1997 to 2013) of the Center for Railroad Photography & Art, Madison, Wis., publisher of Railroaders. The illustrated book has profiles of railroaders photographed by Jack Delano in 1942-43 in Chicago and is about an exhibition of the same name, which closes Jan. 3, 2016, at the Chicago History Museum. It is the first significant biography of everyday railroaders. Collaborators included Pablo Delano, who photographed some of the same families his father had photographed earlier. Contributors included Scott Lothes, president of the center, and Jack Holzhueter, consultant for the center and a retired researcher/editor for the Wisconsin Historical Society.

The Railway & Locomotive Historical Society, founded in 1921, is the oldest railroad history organization in North America. For more information, go to www.rlhs.org.
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