Farewell to a dear Teatown friend, Betty Scholz

We are deeply saddened to share the passing of a dear Teatown friend, Betty Scholtz

Image courtesy of the Brooklyn Botanic Garden

Elizabeth (Betty) Scholtz, director emeritus of Brooklyn Botanic Garden (BBG), died at home in Brooklyn on April 22.

As director of BBG from 1972 to 1980, Betty not only managed the 52-acre botanic garden, she also managed Teatown in its nascent stages. During this time, Teatown was not yet an independent non-profit, but a satellite of BBG.

The core of BBG’s Teatown property was donated to Brooklyn Botanic Garden in 1962 by the Swope family, with the goal of preserving the land and sharing the educational value of the environment. To this end, BBG guided the creation of a new environmental education center and publicly accessible open space. Teatown Lake Reservation was formed in 1963, and until 1980, BBG and Teatown staff collaborated to develop robust educational facilities and programs.

The BBG horticultural and educational staff, led by Betty, lent their expertise and efforts in forming the property that is now considered the “heart of Teatown,” and was critical in creating the spirit of our environmental programming that still exists today.

Kevin Carter, Teatown’s executive director, saw Betty at a BBG celebration as recently as January of this year. “Everybody who knew Betty regarded her as an extraordinary woman and a true class-act,” Kevin said. “She was so intelligent and creative, and always incredibly warm and gracious. She was an educator at heart and brought that spirit to Teatown during its infancy. I am very proud to have known her.”

For more information on Betty’s life and work, click here for a wonderful article written by BBG staff.

If you have fond memories or a reflection on Betty’s life and contributions to Teatown, we encourage you to leave a reply in the comment section below.

If you would like to make a donation to Teatown in her memory, you may do so by clicking here.

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