Daniel Zilka is an Architectural Conservator and Restoration Specialist specializing in preservation methodology and techniques of historical building materials and structures. Mr. Zilka serves as Director of the American Diner Museum in Providence, Rhode Island. He is currently working with the Heritage Harbor Museum (a consortium of 15 heritage and cultural organizations) on the establishment of a permanent home for the American Diner Museum at the Heritage Harbor Museum.
Daniel has been instrumental in organizing numerous conferences, exhibits and other projects.
Prior to his relocation to Rhode Island in 1991, he was an architectural conservator at Washington University Technology Associates in St. Louis, Missouri. His work included conservation assessments of capitol complex buildings in Olympia, Washington and replication of historic lamp posts for the State Capitol Building in Lansing, Michigan.
Daniel received his Masters of Science in Historic Preservation from the University of Vermont in 1981. He received a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Sciences from Antioch College, Yellow Springs, Ohio in 1978.
Daniel has consulted and worked on a variety of restoration projects. Projects include the Town Library in North Hero, Vermont, U.S.S. Ticonderoga, Shelburne Museum in Shelburne, Vermont, Alpha Chi Omega Sorority in Burlington, Vermont, Acacia Fraternity in Burlington, Vermont, the Flynn Theatre, and Burlington, Vermont. He has worked on the restoration of Fort Carre in Antibes, France. His conservation projects include research of Berlin Iron Bridge Company and other bridge building companies in New England, paint analysis on the White Rock Bridge No.65 in Westerly, Rhode Island, the Court Street Bridge in Woonsocket, Rhode Island and the Point Street Bridge in Providence, Rhode Island, the Looff Carousel, Riverside, Rhode Island. He has been involved with numerous diner restoration projects in Ohio, New Hampshire, New York, Massachusetts, Maryland, Vermont, Illinois, New Jersey, Connecticut and Pennsylvania.
He has lectured extensively on the history of diners at historical societies, community civic groups and universities around the country. Mr. Zilka has conducted significant research into the many diner manufacturers and their respective diner structures. He has consulted on numerous diner purchases and restoration projects.