New Arboretum director brings a familiar face, new ideas

Interim director Peter Moe has been named Director of the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum. He’ll officially take THE HELM on Sept. 16.

Moe was named after a national search for a new director, but has been interim director since January, when he was named to that role to replace Ed Schneider, the previous director.  Moe started work at the Arboretum as an undergraduate student gardener in 1973 and worked as a Research Plot Technician and Landscape Maintenance Supervisor before being promoted to Director of Operations and Research at the Arboretum in 1991, a role that includes managing the Horticultural Research Center next door to the Arb. Along with his role at the Arboretum, he has been an instructor in the Department of Horticultural Science at the University of Minnesota and is a graduate of the department.  Moe also holds a Master of Agriculture degree from the U’s College of Food, Agricultural and Natural Resource Sciences.

“I am honored and excited to be appointed Arboretum Director and look forward to working with a great Arboretum staff, MINNESOTA LANDSCAPE ARBORETUM Foundation Board and colleagues in CFANS to build on the excellence in horticultural displays, research and education programs that the Arboretum has long been known for,” Moe said.

His new role comes at a time of change at the Arboretum. The new Tashjian Bee and Pollinator Discovery Center celebrates its grand opening next month, marking the beginning of a new era in community outreach, and the Arboretum has recently completed a major fundraising campaign that exceeded its $60 million goal and has led to new projects including an acclaimed sculpture garden and preservation of the historic Leon Snyder building as well as the bee center. The Arboretum also set an attendance record of 464,252 visitors
during the fiscal year ending on June 30.

Moe also has strong support from the Arboretum’s governing board. “The Foundation Board has developed an excellent working relationship with Pete and is confident in his experience and ability to lead the Arboretum,” said Todd Wagner, president of the arboretum foundation’s board of trustees.

“Pete has been at the center of all this work, directing  facilities management and capital projects as well as horticulture programs including evaluation and selection of plants for the northern United States,” said Brian Buhr, dean of the U’s College of Food, Agricultural and Natural Resource Sciences, which includes the Arboretum. “Under his leadership, the Arboretum collections have grown dramatically in size and quality and the Arboretum has been able to add forest, wetlands and farmland to showcase conservation and research for visitors. He truly is the heart of the Arb, and we’re delighted that he will bring his experience and vision to the director’s role. “