The Morton Arboretum has announced the promotion of Murphy Westwood, Ph.D., to Vice President of Science and Conservation, effective April 23. Westwood joined the Arboretum in 2013 to establish the Global Tree Conservation Program, and has been the Program’s director since 2017.

In her new position, Dr. Westwood’s responsibilities include advancing the Arboretum’s strategy and action for its tree science and conservation programs, which include the Center for Tree Science, Global Tree Conservation, and the Chicago Region Trees Initiative. With more than 18 years of experience advancing international tree and plant science and conservation efforts, she was appointed to the role previously held by Nicole Cavender, Ph.D., who accepted the position of director of botanical gardens at The Huntington Library, Art Museum, and Botanical Gardens in San Marino, Calif. “

The Morton Arboretum has a world-class science and conservation program, and I look forward to working with the dedicated team of experts to address the challenges facing trees and forests,” Westwood said. “With the environment undergoing rapid climate shifts and biodiversity loss, we need urgent action to study, plant and protect trees for a sustainable future.”

Westwood has a Ph.D. in plant developmental biology from the University of Cambridge, master’s degree in taxonomy and biodiversity from Imperial College London, and bachelor’s degree in environmental policy and behavior from the University of Michigan.