Michael T. Southern is a native of Raleigh and a 1973 graduate in Art History at UNC Chapel Hill, where he was a student of John V. Allcott, author of The Campus at Chapel Hill and mentor to a generation of students in American art and architecture.  He has worked for the State Historic Preservation Office since 1974, including several years as supervisor of the Survey and National Register Branch.

Southern is currently Senior Architectural Historian for the HPO and coordinates the agency's Geographic Information Systems initiative, including HPOWEB, an online map service for the state's historic properties and districts.

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