In July 2018, Carrie Rebora ’77 was named CEO and President of The New York Botanical Garden—the first woman to hold such a position.
The New York Botanical Garden is said to be one of the greatest cultural institutions in New York City, and the largest of its kind in any U.S. city. Carrie wanted her new staff to know her before she took her new position, so she spent time in the greenhouses going on tours and talking with employees and visitors. She enjoyed taking in the vibrant culture of the “museum of plants,” which of course includes much beauty and many appealing smells.
Carrie’s museum leadership background.
A museum of plants is a fitting description. Barratt, an art history scholar, worked for New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art for three decades. From 1984 until her appointment to the Botanical Garden, she held various positions within the Met, eventually serving as deputy director for collections and administration. In this capacity, Barratt worked with curators, researchers, conservators, and other museum professionals, and interacted with visitors. While her expertise isn’t in botany—her master’s and Ph.D. are both in art history—her museum leadership background is extremely helpful to her at the Botanical Garden, as she already has a keen understanding of how visitors want to experience and interact with cultural organizations.
Carrie oversees more than a garden.
The Garden, Carrie says, is a place that creates joy for everyone who passes through its doors. But it is much much more. The NYBG is a leader in environmental stewardship and sustainable development. Her role includes overseeing the Garden’s partnership with community gardens throughout the city and the world. The 250-acre landmark site is also the home of scientific research in addition to many educational programs.
Carrie holds a BA in history of art and architecture from the University of Illinois at Chicago. She completed a master’s in art history from the University of California, Los Angeles, and a Ph.D. in art history from the City University of New York.
Regina Dominican will present Carrie the Regina Alumna Medal for Leadership at our 2020 Graduation on May, 23. Here is a link to a short speech Carrie delivered in 2018 which demonstrates her passion for her new position, her new home. https://www.nybg.org/event/sustainability-summit-2018/2018-sustainability-summit-video-highlights/