Spotlight On Kate Oakland

Each month we spotlight a volunteer, staff member, docent, donor, or sponsor of the Virginia Robinson Gardens (VRG) -- those that have made an impact on the organization. We want to let you know about these wonderful people and corporations that give so much to the Virginia Robinson Gardens and to the community, and what they do that is so impactful.

This month, we spotlight Kate Oakland, a wonderful Concierge Van Tour Hostess for Garden Tour and a very helpful, longtime, dedicated docent.

We asked her these three questions:

1. How did you first learn about VRG, and what inspired you to become a docent? 

While working at the Getty Villa, I met a docent who was also giving tours at Robinson Gardens. Being a native Los Angeleno, I was well acquainted with the department store but knew nothing of the home. I immediately booked a tour with her and instantly fell in love. I vowed to join the volunteer ranks the minute I had more free time and in 2005, that opportunity came about. I have loved being a part of VRG from that moment on!

2. What is your role - how do you contribute to VRG? 

I started as a docent in 2005 (giving adult tours) and have greatly enjoyed sharing our hidden gem with the world. I am always amazed at how many native Los Angelenos have never visited this property. It is my wish to have them leave our property counting the days until they can return again! I also work many of the events put on by the hardworking Friends.

3. Can you share a favorite VRG memory with us?

How do you choose just one? I am one of the lucky docents who used to see Mrs. Robinson’s last majordomo, Ivo Hadjiev, on a regular basis when I gave tours. He was always dripping with elegance as he greeted the visitors and welcomed them to our amazing property. Oftentimes, he would join in on the tour and add a few insights. I loved it when he “tagged along” as he was definitely “Beverly Hills Royalty!”

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