Long time Selby Gardens supporter Ann Esworthy, 97, passed away Friday, November 3, 2017. A volunteer who contributed more than 7,000 hours over 41 years, Ann continued to mount herbarium specimens in the Botany department until just weeks prior to her passing.
In addition to co-founding the Friends of the Gardens–Selby Associates, Ann established the Gardens’ tour guide program and wrote the volunteer handbook, “Wonder as You Wander,” that was used for many years to train all guides. She also created a speaker’s bureau to handle requests for our botanists to share the Gardens’ scientific mission. In 2008, then-Director of our Gesneriad Research Center Dr. John R. Clark named a newly-described gesneriad in Ann’s honor.
“Ann was an important leader in Selby Gardens’ history who I admired so much,” said CEO Jennifer O. Rominiecki. “It was my privilege to present her with an award in recognition of her
40 th year as a volunteer in 2016. We will miss her deeply.”
Botany Directory Bruce Holst, who has been acquainted with Ann for more than two decades, noted “A most wonderful friend is gone.”
Ann once commented, “My relationship to the Gardens started as being about the plants and science – and that is still very near and dear to my heart. But it has grown over time to be more about the people, much more about the people.” She was beloved by Gardens staff, volunteers, and members.
Anyone wishing to honor Ann may contribute to the Research Center of Marie Selby Botanical Gardens. To make a donation in her memory, visit this secure webpage, or send a contribution care of Ann Logan to Marie Selby Botanical Gardens, 811 S. Palm Ave., Sarasota, FL 34236.