RFP: Research Study on Diversity in the Lumber Heritage Region, proposals due June-26-2020

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The Lumber Heritage Region of Pennsylvania (LHR) is seeking proposals from qualified professional historians and research organizations to complete a region-wide research study focused on diversity in the historic Pennsylvania lumber industry. The researcher will identify, record, and summarize any stories, scenarios and events that highlight the historic role of women and of individuals of diverse and/or marginalized ethnic and cultural identity. The completion of this research study will assist the LHR in relating and teaching a more comprehensive and inclusive history for the region.

RFP sent: April 16, 2020

Responses due: June 26, 2020

Any questions regarding the RFP may be sent to Holly Komonczi, Executive Director, hkomonczi@lumberheritage.org Proposals sent to Holly Komonczi, Executive Director, hkomonczi@lumberheritage.org

Budget: All phases of the research project (detailed below) will be completed for a fixed sum, not to exceed $12,000. The researcher will be reimbursed for actual mileage and transportation costs, in an amount not to exceed $2,500.

Proposed Project Completion Date: May 15, 2021

About our Organization: The LHR is one of the twelve Heritage Areas in Pennsylvania, as designated by the PA Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR). Spanning 15 counties in north-central PA, the LHR works to preserve and share the history and culture of this region, highlighting the importance of the relationship between the Pennsylvania lumber industry and its forests- past, present, and future. The LHR markets the region’s many assets to potential visitors and investors, serves as an advocate and resource for the current PA hardwood lumber industry, and promotes economic impact and development through its programs, initiatives and grantsmanship. The Lumber Heritage Region serves the following Pennsylvania counties: Warren, Forest, Clarion, Indiana, Clearfield, Jefferson, Elk, McKean, Cameron, Potter, Centre, Clinton, Cambria, Tioga, and Lycoming. There are eleven State Forests (totaling 1.4 million acres) and 35 State Parks within the Lumber Heritage Region, along with 450,000 acres of State Game Lands and the 513,000-acre Allegheny National Forest.

About this project: This study of historic diversity within the LHR is funded through the DCNR Heritage Area Program Grant Round 24, and aligns with the overall mission and vision of the LHR, as presented in the Region’s 2016 Management Action Plan (https://lumberheritage.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/LHR-Management-Action-Plan-2016.pdf). The history that the LHR presents and interprets, as it is broadly understood, is robust; presented beautifully in its collaborative 2016 publication: Wood Hicks and Bark Peelers (A Visual History of Pennsylvania’s Railroad Lumbering Communities) The Photographic Legacy of William T. Clarke; written by Ronald E. Ostman and Harry Littell with an Introduction by Linda A. Ries. Despite there being a relatively plentiful amount of historic source material, information on the role of women and people of diverse, often marginalized ethnic and cultural backgrounds in Pennsylvania’s lumber industry seems to be largely forgotten or overlooked. There are a few known, but somewhat incidental or not particularly well-documented examples of historic women and people of color working in the PA lumber industry, but it is the assumption of the LHR that there have to be more examples, or more to the stories that we only partially understand. This research project will focus on identifying more stories about women and people of color in the PA lumber and forest industry, investigating them, and expanding available information for broader interpretation. As with attempts to uncover the history of any marginalized or poorly documented groups, this task may not be an easy one. Conducting interviews with women and people of color who are currently working in the Pennsylvania lumber and forest products industries is one suggested method of helping to provide relevance and expanded context for potentially scant information about their historical counterparts.

Goals/Deliverables of this project:

• A professional historian will conduct literary and contextual research on the role of women and people of color in the historic Pennsylvania lumber industry. They will write a scholarly research paper, present ing their results. It is expected that the researcher will visit the 15 county historical societies within the LHR as part of this project, meet with their directors/historians, and solicit their input on this project.

• The researcher will present the results of the research at various (to be determined) meetings and confences of professional history and cultural organizations within Pennsylvania (i.e. PA Museums, PA Historical Association, etc.) on behalf of the LHR during 2021.

• The researcher will create a PowerPoint (or comparable) visual presentation that concisely and entertain ingly presents the results of the project. LHR staff will be coached on how to deliver this presentation so they can share the results of the research at various educational forums (i.e. public schools, historical societies, state parks, etc.).

• The researcher will assist the LHR staff in the creation of interpretive signage to be installed at relevant locations around the region, providing public interpretation of the historic information uncovered during the research.

• The researcher will make recommendations on potential relevant historic sites and locations that could be developed as historic tourism assets for the region, relative to the results of the research.

• The researcher will make recommendations concerning potential “next steps” in the LHR Management Action Plan relative to the results of the research.

Projected Timeline and Payment:

Visit 15 Co. Historical Societies (8 hrs each) 120

Visit Other History Sites (4 hrs each) 40

Travel and General Research 80

Writing Results 120

Presenting Results 80

Close-out Project/ Next Steps 40

Total (12 weeks) 480 x $25/ Hour $12,000 plus milage (not to exceed) $2,500 Total not to exceed - $14,500

While we, of course, prefer the most cost-effective solution, all proposals that fall reasonably within this budget will be considered and weighed based on their merits. Companies are not required to be located in Pennsylvania, but their location in or proximity to the Lumber Heritage Region will be considered. Proposals that offer flexibility in billing for non-requiredelements added to the marketplace after the initial launch will also be considered.

Proposal Requirements: Please submit your RFP in pdf format to hkomonczi@lumberheritage.org by COB June 26, 2020 (files over 2MB should be sent using a Dropbox or similar file share method). Include the following in your proposal response:

● Contact Information: Provide all relevant contact information.

● Statement of Interest: Why is your company the right choice for this project?

● Experience: Interested parties shall have a minimum of 2 years of experience performing work. Please briefly describe relevant experience for this project.

● Similar projects: Provide links to recent marketplace projects.

● References: Please provide the name, phone number, email and a brief description of the nature of the professional relationship for three references.

● Solution & Timeline: Explanation of your proposed platform and services, broken into phases with the accompanying timeline, from kick-off to post-launch.

● Who are you? Provide details about your team. Are there any key differentiators about your company?

● Quote: Provide pricing for each phase of the project to its completion.

RFP announced : April 16, 2020

RFP Questions deadline : June 23, 2020. Interested firms may send their questions to Holly Komonczi, hkomonczi@lumberheritage.org on or before May 13 (questions will be responded to within 48 hours).

Responses Due: June 26, 2020

Winner Selected & Contacted: June 29, 2020

Project Kick-off: July 7, 2020

Launch Target Date: May 15, 2021