It’s been 33 years aback Joe Hewgley started his dream job.
No, not the one that acreage him in book or on TV all the time.
He has been in North Platte’s accessible eye aback 1985, aback he was appointed a Lincoln Canton commissioner. But Hewgley attracts far beneath absorption at his self-employed “day job” at Joseph R. Hewgley & Associates, the architectural aing he founded that aforementioned year.
The 70-year-old Hewgley, a backstab Nebraska Association of Canton Officials president, ranks additional amid Nebraska’s alive canton lath associates in connected service. Only Valley Canton Supervisor Allen Cetak, adopted in 1982, has served best afterwards a break, said NACO Executive Director Larry Dix.
But it’s as an artist that Hewgley has larboard accurate legacies beyond 15 states, including his home accompaniment and hometown.
He’s appreciative of his work, alike if his backward Aunt Lila Hewgley did aback insult his best arresting bounded project: the accepted North Platte High School.
When he showed it to her about its 2003 aperture — afterwards cogent her he advised it — “her animadversion to me was, ‘I could aloof shoot whoever did that,’” Hewgley said with his brand chuckle.
Born in a Union Pacific Railroad area abode a Brule, Hewgley was 5 months old aback the Blizzard of 1949 struck. His father, career U.P. man Joseph Raymond Hewgley Sr. (he went by “Ray”), spent that January digging out the tracks. That larboard babyish Joe’s mother, Laverne, abandoned to tend to him and earlier ancestors Pat and Donald.
“We couldn’t get to the atramentous out in the back, so they confused into the kitchen and started afire the furniture,” he said. The ancestors anon confused to West Sixth and Lincoln streets in North Platte, area they anon were amidst by relatives.
Joe aing his ancestor at the U.P. yards on his 16th altogether in 1964, but the berry of his approaching career had been buried by then. Artist Cliff McKillip lived nearby, and “when he bare a rod man” while analysis a property, he’d booty Joe along.
Ray Hewgley larboard his mark while Joe followed him about with “a tamping bar in my hand” during the 1968 architectonics of Bailey Yard’s east hump. The acquaintance agee him against the engineering ancillary of architectonics for a time.
But afterwards admission from NPHS in 1966 and North Platte Junior College in 1969, Hewgley begin his calling at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
“I anticipate aback I got into school, I apparently enjoyed the architectonics aspect a little bigger than I did the algebraic and physics aspect,” he said. “The aboriginal affair I do aback I go in is alpha attractive at the beam or the lights.”
He accelerating in 1973, afresh formed for several North Platte architectural and architectonics firms, with Bill Hahn, Dick Dunn, Jack Gardner and Bob Hinde confined as mentors.
Just as Hewgley was arresting out on his own professionally, County Abettor Bill Hord accommodated to allot added time to his family’s press business. Hewgley succeeded him on July 15, 1985, and has been adopted eight times since.
His accessible account stems from his able values, he said. In both his roles, “you apparently charge to anticipate added about giving than accepting — period.”
He’s served audience in Florida, Idaho and Texas, “but the best architectonics we do is at home” in Nebraska. Alike on the Canton Board, he keeps a aing eye on the action of the 1921 Lincoln Canton Courthouse, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
He admires the allegorical artist Frank Lloyd Wright and the Prairie appearance he founded (“I did a brace of bad imitations of that on projects that I’ve done”). But he about designs his barrio about his clients’ wishes, afterward the “form follows function” aesthetics of the German Bauhaus movement.
“God absolve these abundant buildings,” he said. But “in my opinion, I too generally see architects who, already they accept a little bit of a name, aloof anticipate they can bandy up anything.”
Hewgley employs six bodies amid his capital appointment at 702 S. Bailey St. and the Scottsbluff appointment he opened in 2013. One of his admired projects, Lincoln Elementary Academy in Gering, additionally opened that year with recycled ashamed artery and concrete, “beetle ache kill” reclaimed from Colorado forests and floors address aisle of built-in Panhandle animals.
“We accept a little bit of a history assignment or a cartography assignment in the alley floors,” he said.
Hewgley takes pride in casual one of his barrio “and adage ‘I had article to do with that.’” But he admits his wife of 47 years, Penny, and their three accouchement anticipation he overdid it sometimes on ancestors trips.
“They’d say, ‘Dad, don’t acquaint us about every architecture you did amid actuality and Kansas City,’” he said, amusement again.
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