Message from President Betty Goldstein

“The transformation of the butterfly inspires, as life continues in a new and graceful form.”

Dear Friends,

The monarch butterfly is a creature of great beauty and immense strength. It works diligently and fortifies itself as it gets ready to build its home to reproduce again. Here at the Virginia Robinson Gardens, we are busy “strengthening our home” and revamping our programs to meet the needs of today and the future.

The preservation of the Robinson estate and gardens and its legacy is of upmost importance at this difficult time. The Robinson estate has always been a crucial part of the history of Los Angeles, and it is our responsibility to help ensure its conservation. As part of those goals, the Friends have always assisted the County with its efforts to maintain Virginia and Harry’s home and gardens. To this end, we are using this time for maintenance and repairs. (Please see Superintendent Timothy Lindsay’s article on the VRG website.) Many of the restorations of the home and garden areas are made possible through the generosity of our members through their gift giving and donations.

As we work to maintain the physical history of the estate, we are also working to preserve the oral history of the Robinsons. This task has been taken on by Joan Selwyn and Tim Lindsay through the use of videos. Tim’s depth of knowledge of the Robinsons’ life is immense, and it will now be preserved. He will also be joined by experts to discuss the various collections and treasures in the home. This wonderful idea is the brainchild of Joan Selwyn who was the founding President of the Friends. We look forward to sharing these videos with you in the near future.

When one thinks of Virginia’s legacy, we must include her philanthropic endeavors, especially in the support of children’s organizations and her desire to focus on the needs of the children in the community. It was a great love of Virginia’s and a legacy that we continue to strongly support. One of our most important programs has been our Children’s Science Program. Previously, the program brought school buses filled with children to the Gardens for a tour based on the science curriculum for grades 2 through 4.

We are unable to bring the children to the Gardens at this time, so we are now in the process of converting the program to an Outreach Program that can be used online and in the classrooms when they reopen. This conversion is being championed by Leslie Kavanaugh and Kerstin Royce. The program is supported by foundation grants and donations from our supporters.

Your generosity has enabled us to continue to maintain the legacy of the Robinsons, and we thank you. As you can see, we do not stay idle. Please take joy in the beauty that surrounds us.

My best to you all,

Betty R. Goldstein
President of the Friends of Robinson Gardens

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