A GardenComm Fellow is a member in good standing who has demonstrated exceptionally high degrees of skill, professional ethics and dedication to the objectives of GardenComm. Fellows are nominated by the membership, recommended by the Honors Committee and elected by the Board of Directors. Self-nominations are welcome.
Lois de Vries
Lois is Founding Executive Director of the Sustainable Gardening Institute and SGI's Sustainable Gardening Library, a one-stop resource for reliable information on how to grow flowers and food more sustainably. She holds an AB in Geology from Rutgers University.
A popular regional and national speaker, she has written for media with a nationwide audience, as well as for business, trade, academic, and cultural organizations. Her current work combines her two most enduring interests, gardening and the environment, with the power of mapping technology.
Lois’ love of nature’s wonders, gardening, and the outdoors started as a toddler, nurtured by her grandmother’s urban rose garden, mushroom and blueberry foraging trips, helping her mom with the vegetable garden, and picking wild strawberries at the family’s vacation cabin in the woods. In college. Geology field trips alternated with outings to the greenhouses of Long Island in search of uncommon plants.
Later, as Executive Director of the Sussex County Arts & Heritage Council, she established the Council’s long-running countywide Garden Tour.
While scouting garden locations for Doug Jimerson and Meredith’s gardening title editors, she was introduced to Garden Writers Association by the late Gotti Kelly. Lois joined GWA/GardenComm in 2004 and was drafted to chair the Sustainability Committee in 2011. During that time, she put forward a number of initiatives, and managed the editorial subcommittee for On the QT’s sustainability column.
And made some lifelong friends. Lois likens GardenComm to an extended family, whose
members may have their quirks, but are still family. She feels privileged to have been embraced by some of her long-time horticultural heroes and encourages new generations of garden lovers
to use their creative talents to spread the word about gardening’s pleasures and its place in the web of life.
Lois is honored to also be the 2019 recipient of GardenComm’s prestigious Green Medal Award, which recognizes the life, vision, and work of an honoree who embodies the highest ideals of leadership in promoting sustainable gardening.
“I have a big-picture, long-term vision that keeps me focused on the links between the health of the natural world and the physical and spiritual well-being of humanity. If we don’t keep the environment healthy, we won’t be healthy either,” she says.
Surrounded by wildlife, Lois works and gardens from the woodlands of Northwestern New Jersey, where she and her husband have raised five puppies for The Seeing Eye.
1) Happily, gratefully, and blessedly married to the remarkably kind, talented—and patient!—Becky Norris Stone for 47 years.
2) Father of four kind, loving, and hardworking adult children: Nate (40), Jesse (37), Sammy (34), and Tucker (30).
3) “Papa” to five grandkids, ages 8 to 0.
4) Music team co-leader with Becky of our small community church since its founding 35 years ago.
5) Founder/Chairman of Root Cause Farm, a decade-old garden that grows fresh organic produce and gives it away to people who need it.
6) Avid whitewater canoeist (not kayaker!) for—hard to believe—60 years.
7) Outdoorsman who (confession time) would rather spend time in Nature’s Garden than his own.
8) Lives in a homemade wood- and sun-heated home in Western North Carolina between a mountain and a creek (and made the trails up both)
Oh—you want to know what he’s done professionally?
While Pat’s done things like being the Garden Editor at Mother Earth News, a CBS This Morning TV garden correspondent, and Co-Author of Chicken Soup for the
Gardener’s Soul, his main professional accomplishment is creating, editing, and publishing GreenPrints, “The Weeder’s Digest,” the only magazine that shares the
personal side of gardening: the joy, the humor, the inspiration, and the heart in wonderful stories and beautiful art.
To quote Pat, “Gardens nurture us as much as we nurture them. We garden as much for those inner rewards as for the fruits and flowers. Yet no magazine focused on sharing that moving—and often very funny—side of gardening. Well, in 1990 I was about to get laid off from Mother Earth News and didn’t want to move my family or myself. So I started a magazine with no useful information at all! (Note: The previous sentence was slightly exaggerated.) Was that a get-rich-quick idea? No. A stay-poor-forever one? It sometimes felt like it. How about a way to squeak by for 30 years (and counting) due to the support of garden.com members and very dedicated readers? There’s the truth. The two deepest joys of making the mag are the sheer fun of sharing such great stories and illustrations and—much to my surprise—the deep effect it’s had on many readers, some of whom say the magazine helped them get through deep crisis and loss. What a blessing to be the channel for all that!”
|Lois de Vries||2019|
|Peggy Ann Montgomery||2018|
|Anne Marie Van Nest||2012|
|Cathy Wilkinson Barash||2010|
|R. William Thomas||2010|
|Nona Wolfman Koivula||2009|
|Alan & Linda Detrick||2005|
|Rose Marie Nichols McGee||2004|
|Mary Ellen Logee Ross||2004|
|Frederick E. Roberts||2003|
|Larry & Anstace Esmonde-White||1995|
|Michael D. Smith||1993|
|Jane Price McKinnon||1992|
|Virginia Lewis Beatty||1991|
|Theodore R. Marston||1989|
|George W. Waters||1989|
|Irma Bartell Dugan||1988|
|Joseph E. Howland||1988|
|James W. Wilson||1988|
|John E. Bryan||1987|
|F. Gordon Foster||1986|
|Fred C. Galle||1986|
|Corinne W. Willard||1986|
|Lorraine M. Burgess||1985|
|Dr. Ray C. Allen||1985|
|Everitt L. Miller||1985|
|Alice Upham Smith||1984|
|M.C. "Lee" Goldman||1983|
|Paul F. Frese||1982|
|Clarence E. Lewis||1982|
|George W. Taloumis||1982|
|John E. Bradshaw||1981|
|John Burton Brimer||1981|
|Robert A. Nicholson||1981|
|G. "Doc" & Katy Abraham||1979|
|Alice W. Burlingame||1979|
|Dr. R. Miltion Carlton||1977|
|Gordon B. Lloyd||1977|
|C. Gordon Milne||1977|