FY12 Annual Report
Message to Our Supporters
We are continually delighted to hear how much the Richmond community loves Maymont and enjoys its exhibits, programs and open spaces. In business meetings, restaurants and even at other attractions, locals are always eager to share their favorite things about the estate and their most memorable experiences from their visits. The vast majority of people that we talk to in the area have been to Maymont, and most plan to visit again.
Yet, outside the Richmond region, Maymont is still unknown to most of the population. The estate has been called Richmond’s best-kept secret, but that’s not a title we hope to keep. And if last fiscal year is any indication, we are taking the right steps to become a world-class attraction mentioned in conversations across the country.
In FY12, Maymont received national recognition as a Top 10 Great Public Space in America, was presented with a national award for historic preservation, and was acknowledged for a national champion tree on the property. We hosted an international visitor, the Ambassador of Japan to the United States, for the Japanese Garden 100th anniversary, and the estate served as a backdrop for the much-anticipated film, “Lincoln,” directed by Steven Spielberg and seen in theaters nationwide.
We are also excited to move forward with a new Interpretive Master Plan for Maymont, adopted in January 2012, which includes many improvements that will enhance the estate. Great planning has led to great fundraising, including plans for a comprehensive capital and endowment campaign that pays tribute to the Dooleys’ spirit of generosity demonstrated when they gave Maymont to all of us to enjoy. In turn, we expect that these enhancements will help to showcase our Richmond jewel as a national treasure.
These steps toward national recognition and other highlights from fiscal year 2012 would not have been possible without you – our donors, volunteers, members and community partners. Your gifts of funding, time, talent and endorsement show that the Dooleys’ spirit of generosity lives on. Thank you for all you do!
David M. Camden
Norman O. Burns, II
Year in Review
This was a fiscal year of celebration and tremendous support for Maymont. From its recognition as a Great Public Space in America to the 100th anniversary of the Japanese Garden, Maymont was honored in a variety of ways.
Japanese Garden 100th Anniversary
In 2012, Maymont observed the 100th anniversary of the Japanese Garden with a diverse array of activities and events. We received more than 1,400 entries to the anniversary photo contest, hosted special guests including the Ambassador of Japan to the United States, and entertained hundreds with Japanese-themed programs. The garden’s history and anniversary were featured in Richmond Magazine and the Richmond Times-Dispatch, and winning photo contest entries were published in the Richmond Times-Dispatch and on Richmond.com.
Lincoln Movie Filming
In December 2011, Steven Spielberg, Daniel Day-Lewis and Sally Field spent a day at Maymont filming scenes for the major motion picture, “Lincoln,” which premiered in November 2012. Maymont is clearly visible in the carriage scene with Daniel Day-Lewis as President Lincoln and Sally Field as the First Lady. The production company worked on-site for 26 days installing and dismantling a façade of the McLean house in Appomattox Courthouse (pictured at left), the backdrop for the scene of Lee’s surrender to Grant. On the day of filming, approximately 150 actors and 35 horses were on the grounds.
Planning for the Future
Maymont Foundation adopted a new Interpretive Master Plan (IMP) in January 2012 which is a guide for how we will proceed with overall site improvements like signage, buildings, gardens and wildlife habitats. The significance and impact of the IMP will be seen most prominently through the new comprehensive interpretive and directional way-finding signage program that will be installed throughout the estate.
Major Awards & Grants
Maymont was recognized on a national level with several awards last fiscal year, and the foundation was honored to receive significant grants from national and local organizations to continue to enhance and preserve the estate. Highlights included:
2011 Top 10 Great Public Space
In October 2011, the American Planning Association (APA) announced the designation of Maymont as one of 10 Great Public Spaces for 2011 under the organization’s Great Places in America program. APA Great Places exemplify exceptional character and highlight the role planners play in creating communities of lasting value.
2011 AIC/Heritage Preservation Ross Merrill Award
In November 2011, Maymont received the 2011 AIC/Heritage Preservation Ross Merrill Award for Outstanding Commitment to the Preservation and Care of Collections, given annually by Heritage Preservation and the American Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works (AIC) to organizations that demonstrate a long-term commitment to conservation and restoration. Maymont Foundation was recognized for demonstrating excellence in collections care and conservation of Maymont Mansion. (Pictured above, Dale Wheary, Director of Historical Collections & Programs, received the award.)
2012 National Champion Tree
In spring 2012, the National Register of Big Trees and the Virginia Big Tree Program bestowed the title of national and state champion to one of Maymont’s Darlington Oak trees, Quercus hemisphaerica, located behind the Nature Center by Dooley Creek. Seven other trees were recognized as state champions by the Virginia Big Tree Program.
Mary Morton Parsons Foundation Grant
The Mary Morton Parsons Foundation awarded a $500,000 challenge grant in support of new interpretive and way-finding signage across the estate, a two-to-one fundraising challenge with a requirement that it be met by November 2012. (Update: The challenge was successfully completed by the deadline.)
National Endowment for the Humanities Grant
The National Endowment for the Humanities awarded a $425,000 challenge grant to support future conservation and preservation efforts at Maymont Mansion, a three-to-one fundraising challenge that must be met by July 2017.
The Robins Foundation Grant
The Robins Foundation made a $1,000,000 gift toward the Spirit of Generosity Campaign for unrestricted endowment.
Volunteers contributed almost 16,000 hours to Maymont in FY2012. Following are the award-winning volunteers of the year:
- Volunteer of the Year: Ford Reid
- Dooley Award: Edward and Karen Shepherd
- Directors Award: Hannah Fuerhoff, Bill Long, Scott Martin
- Rookies of the Year: Jeff Roseman, Sue Grob, Iain Waye. Michelle Lewis
Guests raised close to $250.000 at the 2011 Vintage Maymont auction at The Jefferson Hotel. Liz and Stanton Thalhimer and Janet and Duane Deskevich served as co-chairs, and Wells Fargo was presenting sponsor.
Rita Moyer Smith (pictured center) received the 2011 Maymont House Benevolent Society Award in recognition of her many years of faithful stewardship of historic Maymont.
Animal Training for Guests
The animal care team introduced regularly-scheduled otter and bobcat training sessions for the public to increase guest interaction and educate guests about the animals and the specialized care they receive at Maymont.