Kathryn Richardson

Kathryn Richardson

Curatorial Assistant

125 Arborway
Boston, MA 02130
Phone: 617.384.5607
Fax: 617.524.1418


BS Botany (2003), University of Maine, Orono

Since 2004, I have been a Curatorial Assistant in the Plant Records Office at the Arnold Arboretum. An important aspect of my work is to make sure we have the most complete and accurate records to document our living collections. This includes accessioning new materials and updating historic records, nomenclatural reviews, as well as documenting field checks of our plants and tracking plant distributions to other institutions. I also work with the curator to manage staff and visiting scholars with research use of the collections. My job is to make sure we have the most complete and accurate information regarding all aspects of the living collections and that those wishing to use the collection are provided with the information and direction needed to be successful with their work.

I received my bachelor’s degree in botany from the University of Maine, Orono, where plant taxonomy and botanical nomenclature became my passion. I also studied Medical Anthropology and Ethnobotany. I am truly fascinated with the interaction between people and plants.

My previous work experience includes working as a Professional Specialist at the University of Maine Herbarium, where I was charged with collecting, mounting, documenting, identifying, and caring for herbarium specimens. I was a lab technician in a mycological lab studying the growth of imperfect fungi on low-bush blueberries. Through fieldwork, greenhouse work, and lab work I was able to identify and isolate common strains of imperfect fungi. I was then employed as a lab technician for the USDA-ARS Plant, Soil, and Water Laboratory, where I ran many experiments including nitrification potentials, KCl extractions, CO2 measurements and titrations for soil analysis and the extraction of genomic DNA from soil samples.

When I am not hard at work at the Arboretum, I am at home with my husband and two beautiful children experiencing all that life has to offer.


Richardson, K. 2009. A Closer Look at Fungi in the Arnold Arboretum. Arnoldia 66 (4): 13-21. [pdf]

Richardson, K. 2010. Magnolia kobus. Silva, Spring/Summer 2010. [pdf]