FY15 Annual Report
Message to Our Supporters
Conservations, collaborations and new additions were highlights at Maymont in Fiscal Year 2015. Each endeavor began with an idea for how to improve our guest experience, how to preserve the estate for the future, and/or how to educate and enrich our community. From conserving Maymont Mansion windows to introducing alligators at the Nature Center, these goals have become realities thanks to our group of dedicated board, staff, volunteers, donors and professional partners.
Maymont is the place we love and nurture, but only with passionate people does it truly come to life. Our guests give us motivation and purpose to make Maymont the best it can be. Donors make it possible to open the gates each day, protect resources and enhance attractions. Our partners provide relevant relationships with the outside world, and staff, volunteers and board members shape the future for this great American estate. The Dooleys’ spirit of generosity shines through each day in the individuals working together to care for their lasting legacy.
As we look to the future, it is with great anticipation and excitement for what tomorrow will bring. In the new fiscal year, we remain focused on the Spirit of Generosity capital campaign to bring the guest experience to a whole new level and to conserve and protect Maymont’s assets for future generations. Projects are well underway now, with benefits that the community can see immediately in FY16 and will enjoy in years to come.
All of this is possible because of you—our family of supporters. Your kindness and dedication make Maymont a better place for all and capture the essence of the Dooleys’ extraordinary gift. Thank you!
FY14 Board President
Norman O. Burns, III
Year in Review
Windows of Opportunity at Maymont Mansion
The windows of Maymont Mansion look out onto a breathtaking landscape and into a world of Gilded Age treasures, but how often does anyone consider the windows themselves? Their importance was recognized in FY15 with a $145,000 grant from the Institute for Museum and Library Services and matching funds from the Richard S. Reynolds Foundation. This financial support has allowed us to begin the first phase of a comprehensive window conservation and museum environment improvement project. Exterior mounted laminated panes will be fabricated and installed to reduce light transmission, protect the original window frames and sashes, and reduce air and moisture filtration and energy consumption. The drawing room windows will receive an added enhancement with new luxurious silk reproduction draperies, a project coordinated by Natalie Larson of Williamsburg, thanks to generous contributions in FY15 from Agnes and Garland Gray Foundation, the Rock Foundation, the Anne Carter and Walter R. Robins, Jr. Foundation and June and Chuck Rayfield.
Alligators Arrive at the Nature Center
It was an awesome August in 2014 when American alligators arrived at the Nature Center. Though they are the largest species of reptile in North America, measuring 10 to 14 feet and weighing 500 pounds in adulthood, Maymont’s newest inhabitants aren’t quite so menacing. The five young reptiles were between one and two years old, measuring approximately eight to 30 inches long, when they made their public debut on August 2. Two alligators are on view in a renovated space in the Nature Center galleries, and the others make appearances during environmental education programs for the public and schools as well as birthday parties. Unlike the other wildlife at Maymont, American alligators aren’t native to Virginia. However, they can be found as close as 12 miles from our border, and the exhibit explains how their range could easily expand into the Commonwealth with a slight change in climate. In addition to the gators, lined seahorses also joined the Nature Center animal menagerie in summer 2014.
Maymont Beautifies Richmond
There’s no question that Maymont is a place of singular beauty in our city, but in FY15, we had a chance to participate in the beautification of Richmond beyond our gates. Director of Horticulture, Peggy Singlemann, teamed up with staff from Venture Richmond for the Richmond Gateway Beautification Project at 3rd and 5th Streets in preparation for the UCI Road World Cycling Championships hosted in Richmond in September 2015. The year-long planning and implementation of the project enhanced city gateways, or major access points, with containers of annuals and perennials intended to stand the test of time.
Wonderful Wedding Collaborations
Every little girl in Richmond imagines having her wedding in Maymont’s romantic gardens, so it came as no surprise when Maymont was selected for two major wedding-related events in early 2015. In January, our special events staff worked with CBS6 and the Richmond Wedding Experience to give one lucky couple a special “Wedding in a Week.” Maymont Mansion provided a beautiful backdrop for the outdoor ceremony, held on a mild winter day, and the reception was hosted in the Garden Hall. More than 15 local wedding professionals donated time, talent and expertise to give the couple the wedding of their dreams. Then in February, Maymont took part in the Wedding Crashers Tour, an event held for couples to “crash” Richmond event venues set up for mock wedding receptions. A Sharper Palate catering company and six other vendors helped to create a beautiful rustic party setting at the Nature Center.
Volunteers Are Invaluable
Maymont is incredibly fortunate to have so many generous people willing to give their time, talent and expertise to support the estate each year. In FY15 alone, 1,711 volunteers – including 32 community and corporate groups – gave 23,137 hours to host tours, paint fences, plant gardens, educate the public, support special events and much more. Here are the award-winning volunteers for the year:
Outstanding Dedication & Volunteer of the Year (for the fourth year in a row!):
Krisanne Crosby, Mansion
Coles Squire, Horticulture
Stacy and Hayden Mustico, Nature Center
Meaghan Godwin, Children’s Farm
Libba Walter, Carriages
Rookie of the Year Awards:
Ed and Diane O’Connor, Mansion
Ken Venos, Horticulture
Sandy Mikesell, Nature Center
Caroline Dale, Children’s Farm
Jeffrey Legg, Carriages
We also recognized 31 people who gave more than 100 hours of service each. Thanks to all who contributed!