ROCKFORD (WIFR) – The woman who led numerous beautification efforts throughout the Rockford community and also manages Nicholas Conservatory & Gardens will officially retire this week after 10 years with the Rockford Park District. Ruth Miller began her career in 2002 as Program Coordinator for City of Gardens, part of the Rockford Park District Foundation. Miller was responsible for District-wide beautification efforts of public and private places to create a beautiful environment in which to live, work, and play. Miller also played a huge part in Rockford receiving two national beautification awards from America in Bloom, and bringing the America in Bloom conference to Rockford in 2007.
Miller continued her role with City of Gardens while taking on a new title, Manager of Nicholas Conservatory & Gardens, 1354 North Second Street, Rockford. Even before breaking ground in August 2009, Miller was a major part of the project. “I started my role at the Conservatory by visiting other nearby conservatories to find out what worked and what didn’t, so we could determine the best operational practices for Nicholas Conservatory & Gardens,” says Miller.
In October 2011, Miller was able to stand back, watch, and listen to the many compliments as the Conservatory officially opened to the public. “So many people have come through our doors since that day, and I have been fortunate to be a part of a lot of special memories. The Conservatory is a special place that I will always treasure, but I know it’s in good hands and will be passed on from generation to generation,” says Miller. Miller’s last day is March 15, 2013.
Kelly Moore, Member Relations and Gift Store Coordinator, will take over as Manager of Nicholas Conservatory & Gardens. Moore has been a part of Nicholas Conservatory & Gardens since construction on the facility began, and joined the Rockford Park District full time in January 2011.