During a week when West Virginians look back on our state's history, it was appropriate for Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin to honor a woman whose labor of love has ensured we have tangible links to our heritage.
Betty Woods "Snookie" Nutting was honored Wednesday as a Distinguished West Virginian, for her contributions to our state.
Nutting is known nationally for historic preservation work. For nine years, she was the West Virginia adviser to the National Trust for Historic Preservation and still serves as an adviser emeritus. She helped found and was the first president of Preservation Action of West Virginia.
Not only has she saved many Victorian-era buildings from the wrecking ball, but she has restored their elegance and beauty, making many available as homes for future generations. Her campaign has been a model of the "adaptive reuse" philosophy.
Historic preservation is a career for many people. But Nutting is different. Simply because she saw a need and decided to tackle it, she has spent decades of her own time preserving significant old buildings. Much of the labor was with her own hands.
Such dedication is unusual and extraordinarily praiseworthy. Generations to come will be very grateful for her commitment.
It was fitting, then, that Snookie Nutting was honored during our state's sesquicentennial celebration. Clearly, she is a very distinguished West Virginian.