About Us

MISSION

To establish, preserve, and maintain an arboretum and botanical garden that is a source of information, education, culture, and beauty for all to know.

Old barn and cowshed circa 1982.

HISTORY

Founded in 1980, our history actually began five years earlier, in 1975, when “Mac” Marshall (1894-1977) donated 51 acres of land — 36 acres of meadow and about 15 acres of walnut timber — to the City of Dubuque with three stipulations:

  • that the land would always be used as a park
  • that he could reside in the farmhouse whenever he wanted
  • that city government begin developing the land within a year

At the time, there were just two structures on the property:

  • Marshall’s farmhouse
  • an old barn with a cowshed

SUSTAINABILITY

Environmental From drip irrigation in our gardens to installing thermostat-regulated exhaust fans and louvers in our greenhouse to reducing the use of paper products and printing, we’re always looking for ways to be environmentally sustainable and responsible.

Financial We continue to seek and establish funds that are permanently endowed. This has taken us a long way towards continued financial sustainability.

Operational All volunteer-created and all volunteer-maintained, its grounds continue to grow and expand year after year. More than 350 volunteers (individuals, families, civic/social groups, clubs, organizations, churches) give their time and expertise to plan, create, and maintain our grounds; purchase and display merch in our gift shop; and staff our administrative office.

DIRECTOR

JENNA HIRTZ

Jenna Hirtz has been the director of the Dubuque Arboretum & Botanical Gardens since the fall of 2021. Her previous work experience included:

  • Audit Associate at Eide Bailly LLP, and
  • Budget Financial Analyst with the City of Dubuque.

After earning an Associate’s degree in Accounting at Northeast Iowa Community College, she enrolled at the University of Dubuque where she completed a Bachelor’s degree in Accounting, Business, and Human Resource Management as well as a Master of Business Administration.

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

STEVEN ULSTAD

Chair

JEFF MOZENA

Vice-Chair

SUE SIMON

Secretary

MARSHA ABBOTT

Treasurer

WYLIE BLEDSOE

Board Member

MEL GRAVES

Board Member

MERLIN GREEN

Board Member

LYNNE HAGER

Board Member

DENNIS HOYER

Board Member

Media Coverage

NEWS OUTLETS

TELEGRAPH HERALD:

Fish fodder / Japanese Garden’s Koi Pond

VIEW IMAGE

Fish fodder

Ainsley (left),4, and Chloe Johnson, 6, of Dubuque feed the koi in a pond at the Dubuque Arboretum & Botanical Gardens on Thursday, Oct. 6, 2022.

Photo by: STEPHEN GASSMAN


TELEGRAPH HERALD:

People walk through the Dubuque Arboretum & Botanical Gardens on Aug. 17.” 

VIEW IMAGE

View from above: Aerial arboretum

People walk through the Dubuque Arboretum & Botanical Gardens on August 17, 2022.

A photo series presented by the Telegraph Herald, “View from Above” features a drone photo of an interesting spot in the tri-state area in each Thursday’s TH.

Photo by: DAVE KETTERING


TELEGRAPH HERALD:

“Family to construct, donate 19-acre children’s area to Dubuque arboretum” 

[Article behind a paywall]

TELEGRAPH HERALD:

“DRA announces $1.5 million in grants to local organizations”

Excerpt: Dubuque Arboretum & Botanical Gardens received a $35,000 grant to install new bathrooms at the entrance to the legacy tree trail. Director Jenna Hirtz said the trail has grown more popular in the past year, and adding bathrooms will keep guests more comfortable. “We just keep growing and developing that area,” she said. “We’re just so appreciative of the DRA’s relationship and giving back to us over the years. They’ve been a key organization for us to work with to continue more expensive projects that we may not have been able to undertake ourselves.”

[Article behind a paywall]

TELEGRAPH HERALD:

“View from Above: Japanese Garden and koi pond”

VIEW IMAGE

An aerial view of the Japanese Garden and koi pond at Dubuque Arboretum and Botanical Gardens on Wednesday, June 15, 2022.

A photo series presented by the Telegraph Herald, “View from Above” features a drone photo of an interesting spot in the tri-state area in each Thursday’s TH.

Photo by: JESSICA REILLY

[Used with permission.]


TELEGRAPH HERALD:

“Dubuque Arts Council marks 3 decades of Music in Gardens”

[Article behind a paywall]

EAGLE 102.3:

“A stroll through the Dubuque Arboretum & Botanical Gardens in Early Spring”

TELEGRAPH HERALD:

Dubuque arboretum to showcase new StoryWalk”

[Article behind a paywall]

TELEGRAPH HERALD:

Person who makes a difference: Arboretum volunteer heads jack-of-all-trades team”

[Article behind a paywall]

TELEGRAPH HERALD:

Sun, warmth take center stage on 1st day of spring in Dubuque”

[Article behind a paywall]

TELEGRAPH HERALD:

“DSO’s Pursuit of the Podium fundraiser returns”

[Article behind a paywall]

TELEGRAPH HERALD:

“Donation helps Dubuque arboretum purchase new backhoe”

[Article behind a paywall]

TELEGRAPH HERALD:

“Dubuque arboretum names new director”

[Article behind a paywall]

Logos

DUBUQUE ARBORETUM BRANDING

Various logotype versions that represent our organization.