The President's Circle

Welcome to the April E-Newsletter

Spring is finally making its appearance at the Garden. Swelling buds on trees, blue scilla and yellow daffodils, and the first red shoots of peonies are emerging from the soil. We are starting to see flashes of color as migrating birds fly through and groups of schoolchildren are again busy exploring outside. Our attendance reflects the loyal and increasing support for the Garden. This past March was the best in Chicago Botanic Garden history, up 54 percent from 2008. Thanks to the President’s Circle, the Annual Fund has eclipsed year-to-date from 2008. Please help us by continuing your remarkable support.

Please click here to read Sophia's letter in full.

Upcoming President's Circle Events

Going Green as a FamilyGoing Green as a Family

Saturday, May 30, 9 – 11 a.m.

President’s Circle members and their families are invited to a special planting project. Join Rick Belding, Chicago Botanic Garden’s fruit and vegetable horticulturist, to assist in the creation of a natural area in the Regenstein Fruit & Vegetable Garden. Click here to view the invitation.

Reservations are required. Email or call (847) 835-6925 by May 23.

Ninth Annual Gardens of Distinction EventNinth Annual Gardens of Distinction

Sunday, July 19, 2 – 4 p.m.
or 4:30 – 6:30 p.m.

This is the President’s Circle signature event. You are invited to view one of Chicago’s most highly praised East Lake Shore Drive rooftop gardens. This magnificent garden was designed by the owner and Maria Smithburg, the noted Harvard-educated landscape architect and philanthropist.

Invitations will be mailed in June. Please save the date as space is limited.

Rice Science Center Opening Dinner with Michael PollanRice Science Center Opening Benefit Dinner with Michael Pollan

Save the Date: Monday, September 21

For the opening of the Daniel F. and Ada L. Rice Plant Conservation Science Center Benefit dinner and remarks by Michael Pollan, author of The Botany of Desire: A Plant's-eye View of the World and The Omnivore's Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals.

Recent President's Circle Events

Charleston Study TripCharleston Study Trip, March 26 29

President’s Circle members took advantage of a rare opportunity to view historical private homes, beautiful gardens, and planations.
Click here to view photos from the trip.


Production TourSneak-Peek Tour of the Garden’s 2009 Plants with Kris Jarantoski

On Tuesday, April 7, Executive Vice President and Director Kris Jarontoski led a behind-the-scenes tour of the production greenhouses. Attendees enjoyed a sneak peek at the 2009 spring plantings. Brian Clark, manager of the production greenhouses, provided insight into the planting and sustainable practices of the Garden. Click here to view the photos.

On behalf of the staff and board of the Chicago Botanic Garden, I am so grateful for your support. You help us bring joy to people’s lives and save the planet by saving the plants. Thank you so very much. Please know I would love to hear from you at any time with your thoughts. Every day, it is an honor and privilege to serve the Chicago Botanic Garden.

Sophia Siskel
President & CEO
Chicago Botanic Garden


The President's Circle Steering Committee

Sophia Siskel
President and CEO

Susan Stone
Michael Busch

George Bodeen
Nancy Bodeen
Mary Boyer
Susan Canmann
John Deimel
Frank Farwell
John Fornengo
Dorothy Gardner
James Glasser
Alice Goltra
Kathi Grant
Tricia Hagenah
Will Hagenah
Florence Hart
Marci Holzer
Betsy Karp
Jennifer Kasten
May Cat Kneibler
Brooke Kuehnle
Cindy Lenhardt
Laura Linger
Anne Loucks
Stephanie Madigan
John McEnaney
Brooks Morgan
Terry Moritz
Jane O'Neil
Michael Rhoades
Patti Ross
Arch Shaw
Charlene Shaw
Robert Shaw
Gary Slack
Susan Spears
Pam Szokol
Paula Trienens
Ernest Waud
Nicole Williams
Heather Wright