Strategic Plan 2023 – 2027

Since 1976, Jenkins Arboretum & Gardens has stewarded 48-acres of woodland and gardens for the enjoyment of the community and the health of our local wildlife and waterways. As we near our 50th anniversary, Jenkins is recommitting to our core reason for existing: to connect our community to plants, place, and each other. To help us establish priorities and set goals for the next few years, we affirmed an updated mission statement, adopted organizational values, refreshed our visual identity, and drafted a strategic plan that will direct our efforts through 2027. We are excited to share these updates and hope you will follow along as we work to realize these goals in the next few years.

Mission Statement

Jenkins Arboretum & Gardens celebrates the wonder of plants and place as a destination for education, conservation, and community connection.


Organizational values represent our collective core beliefs and direct how we approach our work and engage with the communities we seek to serve. We strive to be:

Inviting – Provide an enjoyable, inclusive, and welcoming refuge that offers respite to all who enter.

Inspiring – Connect and inspire through excellence, naturalistic beauty, and vibrancy as a distinct yet approachable destination.

Engaging – Engage and influence through education and example to promote ecological stewardship and environmental resiliency.

Leading – Offer our plant collections, programming, and knowledge as community resources.

Serving – Continue to serve our community, staff, volunteers, and partners, as well as the land, legacy, and resources we steward.

Strategic Plan

Building on our mission and values, our new strategic plan charts a course for the organization for the next few years and sets the foundation for future decades’ growth and relevancy. We are committed to making progress on the following goals by 2027. In doing so, we will be responsible stewards of your generous donations, and will continue to serve the people, plants, and animals who thrive because of this special place.  

Goal 1: Position Jenkins as a model of and leader in ecological horticulture and environmental stewardship.
Everything we do at Jenkins is in partnership with nature. This unique approach to horticulture is becoming increasingly important as our world experiences dramatic changes in temperature, rainfall, and other climate-related events. Over the next few years, we will work to share our unique expertise in ecological horticulture and environmental stewardship, using our site as a hub for learning and public education. At the same time, we will work to increase our own knowledge of how best to care for our landscape and resources.

Goal 2: Broaden Jenkins’ local reach by inviting more, and more diverse, people into our garden and community.
We have worked hard to make Jenkins an approachable, accessible space for everyone who chooses to visit. With free admission and visitation hours every day of the year, some barriers to access are already removed. But there’s still much more work to do! Through increased partnerships, improved communications, expanded amenities, staff learning, and upgrades to our physical site, we will strive to make Jenkins increasingly approachable for all visitors.

Goal 3: Foster a deeper connection to place among Jenkins’ visitors.
As a place-based organization, we are always looking to deepen the connection between our visitors and our physical site. To do this better in the coming years, we need to improve our physical facilities to handle increased visitation while preserving the tranquility of the garden that so refreshes our visitors. As we complete capital improvements, we will also create new and improved opportunities for visitors to form life-changing relationships with plants and place. 

Goal 4: Increase Jenkins’ fundraising capacity by deepening relationships with our existing donor pool and cultivating a new generation of donors.
The original gifts of land from the Jenkins and Browning families were generous, yet they were accompanied by insufficient funding to support the infant organization that would grow to become Jenkins Arboretum & Gardens. Through donations of all sizes from individuals over many years, Jenkins has grown to serve our community while attaining financial stability. Looking to the future, we need to invest in the internal systems and capacities that will allow us to bolster support and attract increased donations. Additionally, we hope to deepen and develop relationships with community members who share our vision for the future. By strengthening our relationship with aligned donors, we will be strengthening Jenkins as an organization, allowing a wider audience to engage with this wonderful place.

Visual Identity

Throughout most of 2023, we were busy working behind the scenes to update Jenkins’ visual identity – including our logo! During this project, we sought to convey the same sense of wonder and celebration our visitors feel during time spent in the garden. ⁠

Our new visual identity will be woven through all facets of our organization, from the words we use to talk about ourselves to the way our publications look. Even details such as our logo were carefully evaluated as part of visitors’ holistic experience. ⁠