After more than seven years as the public voice of the Santa Barbara Botanic Garden during the institution’s most controversial era, Nancy Johnson is leaving this week to take a job as marketing and publicity director of the San Francisco Botanical Garden. As vice president of marketing and government relations, Johnson’s toughest job was convincing the public and the County Board of Supervisors that the garden’s “Vital Mission Plan” was an expansion project necessary for economic survival. That plan was finally approved earlier this year, though with substantial cutbacks. Johnson, who was given a “great offer” and also has family in San Francisco, explained, “This was a hard decision to make because this Garden is absolutely wonderful. But after much soul searching, this is the right move for me to make at this point.” After more than 11 years in Santa Barbara—including stints at Borders and the Maritime Museum—Johnson starts her new position on 10/1.


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