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Brian R. Vogt

By Suellen White

The Cynthia Pratt Laughlin Medal

Under

Brian’s

leadership,

attendance has grown to over 1.4

N

ot everyone thinks botanic gardens can change the world. Brian Vogt

million visitors annually, making

does. For the past 12 years, Brian has been changing the world as the

it the second most visited botanic

CEO of the Denver Botanic Gardens (DBG). Brian has led a team of

garden in the US. Through a new

professionals, volunteers, donors, and civic leaders to transform the gardens

Master Plan, the gardens have been

from a work of nature to a force of nature. DBG’s mission, “Connecting People

transformed with more than 60 new

to Plants” comes alive every day with local, regional, national, and international

construction projects. To finance it all, Brian

programs.

spearheaded fundraising initiatives that brought in more than $113 million.

In 2007 Denver Botanic Gardens was ready for rebirth. Under economic pressure,

Early in Brian’s tenure the DBG partnered with the community to create a

suffering high staff turnover, and appealing to a limited audience, DBG needed

first-of-its kind community supported agriculture (CSA) program, which is the

to change. The Board of Trustees hired Brian to lead the change and it was a

cornerstone of the Gardens’ Urban Food Initiatives. The program utilizes fields

brilliant decision.

within the historic Chatfield Farms, a nearby campus of the DBG. From seven

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Profile for The Garden Club of America

ConWatch Summer 2019  

ConWatch Summer 2019