About

The Vision for the Garden

outstanding displays, gardens, and programs

Houston Botanic Garden will be an oasis of horticultural beauty showcasing Houston's biodiversity in a beautiful and serene setting. Through outstanding displays and enriching programs, the Garden will inspire all who visit to become environmental stewards as they learn more about plants and the vast natural world.

The Story of the Garden

a seed planted years ago, now comes to life

More than 30 years ago, Nancy Thomas and Kay Crooker had a vision of a magnificent botanic garden in Houston to rival those they had visited in Chicago, San Francisco, Philadelphia, and New York City. They understood the important role a botanic garden could play culturally, educationally, and scientifically—and what Houston was missing.

In 2002, they incorporated Houston Botanic Garden and assembled a strong Board of Directors, with Nancy Thomas serving as the first Chairperson. The Board explored numerous sites across the greater Houston area, considering size, location, and topography, among other things. On January 21, 2015, HBG’s search came to an end as Mayor Parker and the Houston City Council approved a lease agreement to transform the 132-acre Glenbrook Golf Course into a botanic garden. This beautiful property sits on Sims Bayou, just across the Gulf Freeway from Hobby Airport.

Houston Botanic Garden enlisted internationally renowned landscape architecture firm, West 8, to help create a visionary master plan that provides a road map for developing the Houston Botanic Garden in phases over the next 30 years. The master plan celebrates Houston, our bayous, our ecoregions, and our unique identity.

In 2015, HBG launched Grow Houston’s Garden, a $35 million campaign, to fund the first phase of master plan implementation. This phase lays down the critical infrastructure to support future growth, and includes the essential elements to begin welcoming visitors to a beautiful and informative garden in 2020.

The Garden's Leadership

many hands tend to the vision of the Houston Botanic Garden

Board of Directors

Chair Nancy O’Connor Abendshein
Vice Chair Melbern G. Glasscock
Treasurer Randall E. Meyer
Secretary & Chair Emerita Nancy S. Thomas

Carole Bailey
Peggy Bailey
Alberto P. Cardenas, Jr.
Drucie Chase
Cathy Fitzpatrick Cleary
John Eads
Gail Hendryx
Lynne Hudson
Steven J. Lindley
Peter R. McStravick, Jr.
The Honorable
Annise D. Parker
James A. Reeder, Jr.
Jose Rocha
Robert A. Rowland III
Sharyn Aydam Weaver
W. Temple Webber III
Emily Tuttle Wilde

Advisory Council

Mary Beth Arcidiacono
Sadie Gwin Blackburn
Pauline Bolton
Elizabeth Boss
Peter G. Doyle
Bolivar Fraga
Hester T. Hawkins
Kathy Huber
Ann W. Jones
Margarette L. Jones
Wendy Kelsey
John Kirksey
Christopher L. Knapp
Ann Lents
Odette McMurrey Mace
Gary P. Moss
Brenda Beust Smith
Cassie B. Stinson
M.S. Stude
Dean Barkley S. Thompson
Janice Van Dyke Walden
Kingslea von Helms
Bass C. Wallace, Jr.
William Welch, Ph.D.
Ed Wulfe†

Planning Committee

Chair Steven J. Lindley

Nancy O'Connor Abendshein
Carole Bailey
Frank Brown
Elisa Donovan
Lorrie Foreman
Melbern G. Glasscock
David C. Joiner
Randall E. Meyer
Jose A. Rocha
Nancy S. Thomas
Emily Tuttle Wilde

Horticulture Task Force

Chair Nancy S. Thomas

Nancy O’Connor Abendshein
Laura Bacon
Frank Brown
Sheila Condon
Jane Curtis
Lorrie Foreman
Stephanie Fox
Lynn Herbert
Dodie Jackson
Susan Lummis
Brent Moon
Gary P. Moss
Kingslea von Helms
William Welch, Ph.D.

Executive Committee

Chair Nancy O'Connor Abendshein

Melbern G. Glasscock
Steven J. Lindley
Randall E. Meyer
Robert A. Rowland III
Nancy S. Thomas
Emily Tuttle Wilde

Finance Committee

Chair Randall E. Meyer

Nancy O'Connor Abendshein
Alberto P. Cardenas, Jr.
Nancy S. Thomas

Development Committee

Chair Emily Tuttle Wilde

Nancy O'Connor Abendshein
Mary Beth Arcidiacono
Elizabeth Boss
John Eads
Robert A. Rowland III
Sharyn Aydam Weaver
W. Temple Webber III

Governance Committee

Chair James A. Reeder, Jr.

Nancy O'Connor Abendshein
Gail Hendryx
Blair Loocke
Peter R. McStravick, Jr.

Gift Acceptance Committee

Chair Nancy O'Connor Abendshein

Randall E. Meyer
Emily Tuttle Wilde
Claudia Gee Vassar

Program Committee

Chair Carole Bailey

Nancy O'Connor Abendshein
Ruth Beery
Cathy Fitzpatrick Cleary
Ramiro Fonseca
Lynne Hudson
Kristina Meyer
The Honorable Annise D. Parker

Community Engagement Committee

Chair Jose A. Rocha

Larry Bowles
Tom Brents
Ann Collum
Ramiro Fonseca
Bolivar Fraga
Victor Garay
Joe Nelson
Robert Searcy
Mary Vargo

Nominating Committee

Chair Robert A. Rowland III

Nancy O'Connor Abendshein
Peggy Bailey
Alberto P. Cardenas, Jr.
Emily Tuttle Wilde

Capital Campaign Leadership

Chairs
Susanne M. & Melbern G. Glasscock

Co-Chairs
Nancy O’Connor Abendshein
James A. Reeder, Jr.

Capital Campaign Committee
Kit & Carl A. Detering
George F. Hawkins III
Dodie & Richard Jackson
Steven J. Lindley
Randy E. Meyer
Bass C. Wallace, Jr.
Laura & William M. Wheless III
Emily & Carlton D. Wilde, Jr.

Staff

President & General Counsel
Claudia Gee Vassar

Vice President, Horticulture
Joy M. Columbus

Vice President, Development
Laura A. Easton

Director, Marketing & Communications
Justin Lacey

Director, Education & Public Programs
Ayanna Jolivet Mccloud

Horticulture Manager
Brent E. Moon

Executive Assistant to President & General Counsel
Jenna Beth Bayer

Development Associate
Margaret Cardwell

Consultants

Clark Condon
Dykema Architects, Inc.
Harvey Builders
Walter P. Moore
Overland Partners
TI Constructors
Tramonte + Johnson
Venturi Outcomes
West 8

Collaborations

American Public Gardens Association
Houston Audubon
Houston Parks Board
Houston Parks & Recreation Department
Houston Zoo
Katy Prairie Conservancy
Texas A&M AgriLife Extension
Trees For Houston
Urban Harvest
Wildlife Habitat Federation

Get in Touch

Houston Botanic Garden
8205 N. Bayou Drive
Houston, Texas 77017
713-715-9675
info@hbg.org

2018 Form 990

2017 Form 990

Sign up to receive Houston Botanic Garden news and updates

Sign up