Scissortail Park: Our New Central Park

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Maureen Heffernan is the CEO/President of Park Management Company that oversees the management of Myriad Gardens Foundation and Scissortail Park Foundation.  These nonprofit foundations operate and manage the 15-acre Myriad Botanical Gardens and the 70-acre Scissortail Park in Oklahoma City which opened  September 27, 2019.

She is a graduate of Fordham University in New York City and studied horticulture at Ohio State University and the University of Alaska, Fairbanks.

Before joining Myriad Gardens Foundation in 2011, she was the Executive Director of Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens where she led the masterplan development and construction of its 200-acre gardens, trails and facilities.   Other professional positions included: Director of Public Programs at Cleveland Botanical Garden in Cleveland, Ohio and Education Coordinator at the American Horticultural Society in Alexandria, VA.

She is also a garden writer who contributes to Oklahoma Gardener magazine and the author of  gardening books that include:  Seed Starter, Hershey Children’s Garden: A Place to Grow, Native Plants of Maine and Fairy Houses of the Coast of Maine.  

In 2015, Myriad Gardens Foundation was awarded The Charles Schusterman Award for Nonprofit Excellence from the Oklahoma Center for Nonprofits and Best Open Green Space award from the Urban Land Institute.

Chair of the Day

James A. Pickel is a native Oklahoman, originally from Duncan, and a graduate of Oklahoma State University.  For the past 43 years he has lived in Oklahoma City and was employed in the architectural and construction industry. He currently owns and manages Prairie Earth Gardens, which is a terrible retirement plan but a great way of life!

James currently serves on 14 nonprofit Boards of Directors including the Allied Arts Foundation, the Oklahoma Contemporary Arts Center, the Myriad Gardens Foundation, Friends of the Mansion, the Oklahoma City Convention and Visitors Bureau, the Kirkpatrick Family Affiliated Fund, Oklahomans for the Arts, and the Scissortail Park Foundation.

He is a former board member of the Arts Council of Oklahoma City, the Civic Center Foundation, Science Museum Oklahoma, the Cultural Development Corporation of Central Oklahoma, and the Oklahoma Arts Council, in addition to many more nonprofit boards.

James has chaired, co-chaired or served as Master of Ceremonies for several events including three Allied Arts campaigns, two Oklahoma City Festivals of the Arts, five Harding Fine Arts Academy Leadership in Arts & Education Awards, two Dean A. McGee Awards Ceremonies, and seven Oklahoma Governors’ Inaugurals.

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