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 Paola Werstler, a wonderful and dedicated Board Member and Patron Member of The Friends of Robinson Gardens. During the pandemic, Paola’s husband kindly volunteered in the Gardens, which was much appreciated.
1. How did you first learn about VRG, and what inspired you to become a Friend?
Betty Goldstein and Maralee Beck had reached out to a Board of Directors’ member of Cedars-Sinai during the Covid pandemic to offer to place a beautiful installation of succulents in the hospital plaza for our nurses and other staff to enjoy as a brief respite from all the difficulties of the shutdown and the acute medical challenges of providing care during this challenging time. Both ladies were so loving and kind, and then Jeanne Anderson came by weekly to “water” our nurse made of succulents and cacti. Our friendship grew, and Jeanne invited me to join her on several occasions to the Gardens. What a blessing to be a part of such a wonderful group!
2. What is your role – how do you contribute to VRG?
I think of myself as a helper. Working full-time currently prevents me from leading any of our fabulous efforts, but I try to volunteer wherever I can…from Garden Tour registration to thank you notes. Currently, I am working with Ann Petersen and Jeanne Anderson on expanding the opportunities for fundraising and sponsorship.
3. Can you share a favorite VRG memory with us?
One of my favorite moments occurred when I was at the Gardens and it started to sprinkle…the rain on the lawn and pool was so peaceful!!