Our Story

The Roswell Historic District is the heart of our city and has long been a place of interest for residents and visitors alike.  Dating back to the early 1800s, Roswell is rich in Southern history and hospitality.

Sadly, over the years, the area’s streetscape became dirty, weedy, tired, neglected, and in much need of a face lift.  For these reasons, in 2016, a group of Roswell business owners, property owners, and citizen volunteers established the Historic Roswell Beautification Project (HRBP) - a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization and a Nonprofit Partner with the City of Roswell.

HRBP has a focus area of the historic business district and restaurant zone on Canton Street, Heart of Roswell Park and Historic Roswell Town Square. Since August 2016, with the cooperation of City officials, HRBP has focused on four categories of streetscape improvements:

  • Hanging baskets & planters
  • Improve greenspace
  • Maintain common spaces          
  • Tree care
Lamppost Baskets

Renee Shirley - Executive Director

Renee is a native of metro Atlanta.  Roswell has been her home for over 22 years.   Renee loves living in a town that is rich in southern hospitality and is sprinkled with historic homes that tell the story of Roswell’s past. In 2004, she and her husband, Norm, purchased and restored a historic home in the heart of Roswell to house their business. That same year, the Roswell Historical Society awarded them their Preservation Award, recognizing outstanding achievement in the field of preservation by a business or organization.

 A town’s streetscape is its visual identity – a direct reflection and measurement of civic pride.  Having a love of local history and a vested interest in the area, Renee observed, over the years, that the Roswell Historic District looked drab, weed-infested, and unkempt.  Recognizing this problem and determined to do something about it, she and other concerned citizens founded the Historic Roswell Beautification Project (HRBP).  HRBP is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization and Nonprofit Partner with the city of Roswell.  Partnering with the city, HRBP’s mission is to create, maintain, and preserve the beauty of the Roswell Historic District through the completion of streetscape projects within the defined area.

 Renee believes strongly in the old saying, “You never get a second chance to make a good first impression.” So, she is passionate about improving curb appeal and increasing civic pride in the community.  In addition to HRBP, she is a member of Roswell Woman’s Club, having served as Chair for both their Historical and Urban Improvement Committees.

Renee Shirley

Jim Van Epps, Chairman of the Board and Treasurer

Jim is a Roswell resident, business, and property owner.  He is the Chief Executive Officer of Van Epps, LLC, a large national financial services company.  Jim actively serves and participates in many worthwhile and effective philanthropic and nonprofit organizations, here in Roswell as well as throughout the state and beyond.  He feels strongly that there is a lot we can do to enhance the beauty of the Roswell Historic District streetscape.

Joe Skelton, Director

Joe is a Roswell resident, business, and property owner.  He is a partner with DVS Design Group, a landscape architecture, land planning, and golf course design firm here in Roswell.  Joe is a registered landscape architect, and has been in the business for over 28 years.  Joe is instrumental in determining projects that are most needed that will improve the Roswell Historic District.

Lamppost Basket in Bloom