Richard Schulhof will step down as deputy director of the Arnold Arboretum on September 18 to lead the Los Angeles County Arboretum and Botanic Garden as its chief executive officer beginning in October.
Richard Schulhof became Deputy Director at the Arnold Arboretum in 2002, having previously served the Arboretum as a Putnam fellow, as director of education and public programs, and as a member of the Arboretum’s Visiting Committee for Harvard University. In his seven-year tenure as deputy director, Richard directed horticultural and educational programming at the Arboretum, initiating important advancements as part of the institution’s strategic planning process. These endeavors include the creation of the Arboretum’s Landscape Management Plan, which set exemplary standards of care for the living collection through a zonal approach to landscape management. Richard also oversaw the implementation of new programs supporting science education for urban schoolchildren and Head Start students, collaborating with Boston schools and private donors to launch new programs for teacher training, field study experiences, and in-class instruction. In the realm of visitor services, Richard supported enhancements to the Arboretum’s system of wayfinding and interpretation in the landscape.
“I am sure I speak for everyone in expressing our profound appreciation to Richard for the many years of leadership and dedication that he brought to the job of deputy director,” remarked Arboretum director Bob Cook. “He has accomplished a great deal in the past decade, effectively shaping a first-class public museum and its staff who are all deeply committed to excellence in education and horticulture. While we regret Richard’s departure, we wish him good fortune in this new challenge, with the certainty that he will continue to offer exceptional leadership in the public garden arena.”
Richard’s new position will enable him to return to southern California, where he was raised and where members of his family still reside. Before joining the Arnold Arboretum staff, he served as executive director of Descanso Gardens in La Cañada Flintridge, California. His experience in public gardens also includes horticultural internships at the Huntington Botanical Gardens in San Marino and the Mildred Mathias Gardens at the University of California, Los Angeles. Richard holds an undergraduate degree in landscape architecture from the University of California, Berkeley, and masters degrees in public garden administration from the University of Delaware and in forestry from Harvard University.