Tacoma Historical Society honors history keepers

As executive director of Tacoma Arts Live, David Fischer met the challenges of fund raising and budget management for the $21 million project.
Credit: THS

Tacoma Historical Society honored Dale Wirsing and David Fischer on April 8 by for their dedication to preserving and promoting Tacoma’s history.

The presentations were made at the Society’s 29thanniversary meeting, held at the University of Puget Sound on April 8.

The Tacoma Historical Society is pleased to present the 2019 Alan Liddle Award to Fischer for his leadership role in the 2018 renovation of the Pantages Theater. The award is given annually for historic preservation and advocacy.

As executive director of Tacoma Arts Live, Fischer met the challenges of fund raising and budget management for the $21 million project. While providing improved acoustics and patron safety, this project was conducted with meticulous restoration of the auditoriums’ dramatic original details. The project was achieved on the theater’s 100th anniversary and, under Fisher’s direction, the broad menu of performances continue to enhance Tacoma’s cultural richness in this historic venue.

In presenting the 2019 Murray Morgan Award to Wirsing, the Tacoma Historical Society honors the decades-long contributions of one of its founding members. He has served as president and vice president of the THS board and has worked tirelessly to preserve and communicate local history. A few examples of Wirsing’s contributions:

  • Author of “Builders, Brewers and Burghers: Germans of Washington”
  • Editor of the Society’s “City of Destiny Newsletter”for more than a decade
  • Primary editor of every exhibit presented at the Tacoma History Museum
  • Primary editor of nearly a dozen publications by Tacoma Historical Society Press
  • Manuscript reader for any local author who requests his assistance
  • “Program Chair for Life,” coordinating monthly speakers at THS programs and outreach
  • Popular speaker at area retirement centers, regularly presenting on a wide variety of topics
  • Steadfast member of the Friday morning historian group, working to collate Tacoma Historical Society’s collection of books, artifacts, photos and documents


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