Kathleen Spiess, most recently Senior Director of Major Gifts at The Morton Arboretum, has been appointed Vice President of Development at the institution. Promoted to her new role, Spiess now leads the development program, which builds philanthropic support for the Arboretum’s mission-related work in tree science and conservation. As a nonprofit organization and the world’s leading tree-focused botanical garden, the Arboretum advances initiatives locally and globally for the planting and protection of trees through plant collections, education and public outreach programs, and scientific research. Among its supporters are 45,000 members and one million annual visitors.
In her new role, Spiess oversees all aspects of development, including giving and membership programs, to support the growth and advancement of the Arboretum as The Champion of Trees. Under her direction is the concluding phase of a $63 million campaign, Growing Brilliantly, which is raising funds for new initiatives to ensure the future of trees and the benefits they provide for people, communities, and the environment.
Spiess joined the Arboretum in 2014 after holding development positions in higher education and health care. She is a Certified Fund Raising Executive with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Organizational Communication from Western Michigan University. She resides in Elmhurst, Ill.