Establishing McKee botanical garden as an environmental, cultural and educational leader in the community.
OUR 2021-2025 VISION
The Garden’s rich history has laid the foundation for this historic landmark to evolve into a haven for biodiversity where ten thousand tropical plants thrive, internationally renowned exhibits excite, the Children’s Garden captivates, the Garden Café nourishes, and educational programs for adults and children abound, year-round. We will build upon this legacy by cultivating the next generation of leadership, optimizing community partnerships, growing income streams, and inspiring and motivating all generations to become stewards of our environment. McKee Botanical Garden is committed to attracting, educating and delighting visitors of all ages, from all walks of life, for generations to come. Our strategy from now to 2025 focuses on the role McKee will play as an environmental, cultural, and educational leader within the community.
McKee Botanical Garden strives to be an indispensable resource for learning and cultural enrichment within the community. To effectively accomplish this, its governing board is tasked with managing resources efficiently, transparently, and strategically while strengthening planning, budgeting, and funds management, across all levels of the organization.
CONTINUE AND ENHANCE BOARD MEMBER RECRUITING SYSTEM
The health and sustainability of McKee Botanical Garden relies on having highly-qualified and enthusiastic people to serve on its board. McKee will continue to recruit quality members who are passionate about its mission and are committed to upholding the Garden’s legacy as a cultural destination for all. To build, grow, and support a viable board, McKee will provide new members with a thorough orientation and continue to evaluate and enhance ongoing development programs.
Attracting the right blend of expertise, community connections, and diverse perspectives and spheres of influence will assure effective leadership for the Garden. McKee is committed to finding leaders whose skill sets and perspectives align with the Garden’s strategies, goals, and needs—today and into the future. To achieve this, McKee’s Board of Directors will develop activities to attract and cultivate the next generation of leadership—McKee’s Avant Gardeners.
McKee Botanical Garden recognizes that it plays a vital role in contributing to a healthy community by being a cultural and educational destination for those living in and visiting Indian River County. Additionally, the Garden values and prioritizes cultivating and tending to the myriad relationships it has formed with individuals, other organizations and businesses.
SPECIAL EVENTS FOR THE AVANT GARDENERS
McKee will expand its capacity to attract the next generation of leadership, McKee’s Avant Gardeners, by hosting an array of new and unique events and activities in the Garden exclusively for this audience.
BUILD UPON CURRENT EDUCATIONAL PROGRAMMING
To achieve and enhance its mission, McKee Botanical Garden offers innovative, year-round educational programming and accessibility designed to engage adults, children, and families. Through its offerings of timely, thought-provoking, and entertaining classes and activities, McKee will continue to build an active learning environment for residents and out-of-town visitors that also inspires them to explore and connect with the wonders of nature.
COLLABORATIONS WITH THE PROFESSIONAL COMMUNITY
McKee will welcome new audiences and build future stakeholders by deepening its engagement with the local professional community. The Garden will optimize collaborations with our community partners by hosting private events and being a venue for select professional workshops and meetings.
In late 2020, McKee Botanical Garden took over opera- tions of the Garden Café. Under the guidance of restaurateurs, culinary chefs, and other industry experts, McKee improved the quality of the Café’s menu, increased hours of operation, and created a more inviting atmosphere for garden visitors. McKee will continue to enhance the offerings of the Café in collaboration with garden happenings to improve the visitor experience, model sustainability, and grow revenue.
McKee Botanical Garden recognizes that outreach is an effective way to bolster its mission and boost visibility and environmental awareness in our community. McKee would like to position itself as an authority on gardening-related subjects, which can be presented offsite or organized for community groups and schools. McKee will become a speaker’s bureau of sorts, and the community will be able to tap experts on the history of McKee, horticulture, and garden happenings.
McKee Botanical Garden is committed to providing relevant, quality programming by sharing ideas, resources, and best practices to ensure that we educate and influence environmental stewardship effectively and efficiently. Strengthening and increasing collaborations both locally and nationally will enable the sharing of capability, knowledge, and other expertise skill and attract a broader and diverse audience to support the Garden.
McKee Botanical Garden is a fiscally sound nonprofit organization, as demonstrated by its 20 years of operations. Since opening in 2001, the Garden has increased attendance from 20,000 in the first year to nearly 100,000 visitors by the end of fiscal year 2020-2021, with over 1,000,000 visitors in total. To ensure organizational sustainability for future years, fundraising will remain a priority.
Endowment secures McKee’s future and powers its growth. To help ensure the long-term sustainability, McKee will develop and implement a customized fundraising strategy that yields $1 million in new money for its endowment by 2025. One method will be to establish a lecture series that provides a unique learning opportunity and generates revenue earmarked for the endowment.
MCKEE LEGACY SOCIETY
The McKee Legacy Society recognizes and honors the generous individuals who have made a lifelong commitment to the Garden through their estate plans. Legacy gifts enable individuals to create a powerful philanthropic legacy by directly impacting the Garden and helping it achieve long- term financial stability. Currently, McKee has twenty-seven Legacy Society Members and has set forth an ambitious yet achievable goal of acquiring fifty by 2024.
GATEKEEPERS AND MEMBERS
Gatekeepers of the Garden and McKee members play a critical role in ensuring the vitality, excellence, and sustainability of McKee. Their support plays an essential role in preserving one of Florida’s most exquisite historic landmarks, and provides the necessary resources for the Garden to thrive for generations to come. McKee will actively cultivate relationships with Garden Club of America (GCA) members, encourage membership support, and will continue to host the annual GCA Day at the Garden.
McKee will celebrate its 25th Anniversary in 2026. To honor this historic milestone, the Garden will research the possibility of hosting a CHIHULY EXHIBITION—a stunning collection of striking color and intricate glass works by world-renowned artist Dale Chihuly. Visitors will encounter mesmerizing forms of color, light, and shape specifically chosen to be displayed in McKee’s lush jungle landscape.