On behalf of the board of directors, I am pleased to announce the appointment of Evan Meyer as Theodore Payne Foundation’s new Executive Director, effective February 11, 2020.

Evan comes to us from the UCLA Mildred E. Mathias Botanical Garden, where he was Assistant Director, responsible for operational management and strategic development. During his tenure, he launched a variety of initiatives, including a nursery renovation, an overhaul of garden maintenance, and extensive public programming and student engagement.

His botanical career began in the coastal prairie of Northern California, collecting data on methods for conserving native plant diversity. Returning to his home state of Massachusetts, Evan held positions at the Native Plant Trust, The Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University, and the Harvard University Herbaria. In 2012, he came back to California to manage the Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden Seed Bank, the world’s largest and most diverse collection of California native seeds.

As Executive Director, Evan will help us fulfill our strategic plan to communicate the value of native plants and landscapes, engage new communities and members, partner with commercial growers and retailers, and affect public policy in favor of native plants. He’s also ready to roll up his sleeves, dig into both scientific and maintenance work – and continue the enhancement of our Sun Valley headquarters!

Evan is passionate about native plants and very excited to be our new Executive Director. In accepting the job, he writes: “Theodore Payne Foundation has done fantastic work to promote the understanding and use of California native plants over the past 60 years. I’m honored to join the team and to help guide Southern California towards a more sustainable, biodiverse, and regionally distinct future.”

I invite you to come meet Evan. When not at his desk or out in the community, he’ll be shaking hands at our upcoming Winter Plant Sale, at our upcoming 60th Anniversary celebrations, or on TPF grounds among the plants and with dirt under his nails. Welcome, Evan!

DJ Peterson
Board President