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Rev. Richard McClure Prosser


Buffalo, New York


Social advocacy, community development

Presbyterian clergyman and social worker Richard McClure Prosser posthumously received the Whitney Young Award for his innovative community efforts throughout the greater Buffalo area. Before his death in 1984, Prosser launched a series of outreach projects ranging from grassroots organizing to historic preservation advocacy, all beyond the duties of managing a large congregation.


For 10 years, Prosser served as associate and executive director of the Community Planning Assistance Center for Western New York—a community design and development center established by AIA Buffalo and Western New York in partnership with the architecture school of the State University of New York at Buffalo.


Prosser also established a nationwide network of community design centers, and was a founding director of the National Community Design Center organization in Washington, D.C. His 20 years of community service included serving as executive director of Friendship House in Lackawanna, New York, and organizing community development groups in the Midwest and central Africa. He also helped create the Preservation League of New York State, an early leader in the preservation movement, and launched an organization that developed new affordable housing in downtown neighborhoods.

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