The City of Wichita today announced Dawn Hewitt as the new Director of Botanica, the Wichita Gardens. Hewitt has more than 20 years of nonprofit experience, including most recently serving as the Director of Operations for the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center in Austin, Texas.
The Director of Botanica is responsible for managing Botanica employees and ensuring the most efficient operation of the organization, facilities and grounds. Botanica, the Wichita Gardens opened in 1987 and features 18 acres of garden scaping, including more than 4,000 species of plants, 50 sculptures and an annual attendance of more than 300,000 visitors. Botanica is a public/private partnership between the City of Wichita and Botanica, Inc., a non-profit founded to operate the gardens.
Before joining the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, Hewitt managed special events at the Blanton Museum of Art and served as Director of Development at the Arc of the Capital Area. She is the founder of ARTicultation, a collective for artists to network and share resources, and is an adjunct assistant professor of art at Austin Community College. Her experience includes fundraising, volunteer coordination, exhibit development, construction project management, and overseeing an annual public garden budget of more than $5M.
“Botanica is a wonderful example of a garden being a space where nature and art intersect, creating beautiful views and places of discovery. I look forward to working together with the staff, board, volunteers and City to make it shine even brighter as a place for memories to be made and a love for nature and plants to be fostered,” said Hewitt.
Hewitt holds a master’s degree in Art History with a focus on museum studies from Texas Christian University and a bachelor’s degree in Art History from The University of Texas at Austin.
Hewitt will start work on July 10.