Kara Newport has resigned as executive director of Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden in Belmont for a position at a historic home and garden near San Francisco.
During Newport’s 10 years as executive director, Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden’s attendance doubled from nearly 60,000 to more than 123,000 last year, with guests from all 50 states. Membership has grown from 3,500 members to nearly 6,000.
When she arrived in 2006, Newport immediately started planning construction of the garden’s Orchid Conservatory. She and several board members led fund-raising for and construction of Lost Hollow, the children’s garden spurred by a gift from the late Gastonia textile executive Duke Kimbrell.
Newport is taking the helm at Filoli, a country home on 654 acres in Woodside, Calif., that includes 16 acres of formal gardens. Built between 1915 and 1917, the home is owned by the National Trust for Historic Preservation.
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“She’s been an incredible leader, and I know she will continue to contribute to public gardens for many years to come,” said Harding Stowe, chairman of the garden’s board of directors. He said the board will decide soon about an interim director and begin a search for Newport’s replacement later this summer.
“It has been an unforgettable time, and Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden will always hold a cherished place in my heart,” Newport said Wednesday.