Dear Friends of the Garden and volunteers,
I am pleased to introduce myself to you all and be given the opportunity to follow in Lisa Bakerink’s footsteps to serve as your next Executive Director.
My history with the Springfield Botanical Gardens is as long as my history with Springfield. On my very first trip here in 2007, I visited the White Garden and was taken by its beauty and charm. The gardens quickly found a place in my heart when I moved to Springfield the following year, and I have enjoyed watching the complex take shape ever since.
My friend Mary Kromrey, the Executive Director at Ozark Greenways, once told me her job is about “friend-raising” as much as fundraising. That perspective of non-profit leadership and development was a turning point in my career. Whether I was leading marketing and volunteer recruitment for Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Ozarks or County communications with the Greene County Commission, my most important objective was building relationships and understanding what I could do to best serve stakeholders.
It is also through that lens that I hope to lead the Friends of the Garden. And I have big shoes to fill! Lisa has been an invaluable asset to our organization as well as the Springfield community. I am fortunate, however, that Lisa will not be too far away when I need her.
In fact, she’s just across the hall. Lisa now serves as Executive Director of our partner organization the Springfield Sister Cities Association. She also continues to lead many FOG development functions to carry through with the incredible work she and you began.
I look forward to working with Lisa, our Associate Director Lexy Saner, and our board to take FOG forward. In the year to come, you will see many exciting garden projects come to fruition, a new event in June to celebrate our 20th anniversary, and a few new board members who, I have no doubt, will lend their expertise and support as the FOG board forges a strategic path forward.
I am excited to work alongside you to realize the future you all have known and trusted is possible, and I invite you to stop in the next time you’re at the Botanical Center so I can begin to learn your faces and hear about your connections to our beautiful gardens.
Best wishes for a wonderful holiday season!
Executive Director, Friends of the Garden
I am delighted to welcome Trysta Herzog to Friends of the Garden as the new executive director and look forward to working with her and Lexy Saner, associate director, to strengthen the growing partnership between FOG and Sister Cities.
I am also delighted to continue to serve Friends of the Garden as development director.
The Springfield Botanical Gardens are a community treasure and we are so grateful to all of you for your support over the years.
Thanks to friends and donors like you, we continue to add amenities and make improvements to our beloved park.
Development Director, Friends of the Garden
Executive Director, Springfield Sister Cities Association