Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy Greenway Conservancy Inc.

aka Rose Kennedy Greenway Conservancy   |   Boston, MA   |


Our Mission The Conservancy has sole responsibility for managing all aspects of the Rose Kennedy Greenway, including horticulture, programming, public art, maintenance, and capital improvements. Our Vision We envision a vibrant, inclusive, and evolving gathering place that offers healthy green space, fun, engaging, and thought-provoking experiences, and a testing ground for new ideas. We pursue our mission through park care that sustains year-round beauty, ensures safety, and models environmental stewardship; robust programming that showcases and supports the ingenuity and breadth of our community; and temporary exhibitions of contemporary public art that facilitate artistic experimentation and speak to our current moment; raising the standard of excellence for urban park management.

Ruling year info


Principal Officer

Mr. Chris Cook

Main address

185 Kneeland Street, 2nd Floor

Boston, MA 02111 USA

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NTEE code info

Botanical, Horticultural, and Landscape Services (C40)

Arts, Cultural Organizations - Multipurpose (A20)

Community, Neighborhood Development, Improvement (S20)

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Programs and results

What we aim to solve

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Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Park Maintenance and Horticulture

The Rose Kennedy Greenway is Boston's only organically maintained public park and one of a handful or organically maintained urban parks in the United States.Because the Conservancy's ground-up approach encompasses all living things including soil, plants and trees, children and pets can play freely and safely on our lawns without the worry of chemicals or pesticides. Our plants are healthier, more resilient, and better able to withstand the wear of public use. The Conservancy's practice of not using herbicides and toxins also ensures that run-off from the parks will no pollute Boston Harbor or harm the delicate marine life. The goal of a sustainable landscape is a net-zero "environmental footprint." A sustainable landscape demonstrates a harmonious relationship between the natural and created environments. Proper soil management, plant health, air and water quality, and resource conservation are all part of maintaining a sustainable landscape.

Population(s) Served

The Conservancy has partnered with for-profit and non-profit organizations to develop 400+ free public programs designed to connect people of all backgrounds and generations to each other, the park, the surrounding neighborhoods and the natural environment. These include festivals, concerts, public art, horticultural tours, farmers' and artisans' markets, food trucks, fitness classes, and family programs. This department also spearheads critical additions to the parks and works on constant improvement of The Greenway, including signage, furnishings and capital improvements. Programs and public events have tripled attendance over the past four years, increasing steadily year over year. In 2016, the Conservancy's programs drew over 1,379,000 visitors, making The Greenway one of Massachusetts' top-ten attractions.

Population(s) Served

Completed in 2012, the Conservancy's Public Art Strategy outlines an ambitious program to position The Greenway—and the City of Boston--as an internationally-known showcase for temporary, contemporary public art. Already, the Conservancy is redefining public art in Boston. The 70' x 76' wall across from South Station in The Greenway's Dewey Square Park has become an award-winning focal point of the public art program with 12-month installations by Os Gemeos (in partnership with the ICA), Matthew Ritchie (also with the ICA), Shinique Smith (with MFA), Lawrence Weiner (with MIT List Visual Art Center), and Mehdi Ghadyanloo. In 2015 the Conservancy presented a monumental aerial sculpture by internationally renowned local artist, Janet Echelman, suspended hundreds of feet over the park. We are now presenting the curatorial theme Playful Perspectives, including works by Chris Templeman, Meredith James, and Mark Reigelman. The Conservancy contextualizes public art on The Greenway through a wide variety of free public programs. Trained volunteer Arts Ambassadors lead tours and informally provide information about art on The Greenway.

Population(s) Served

Piloted in 2014, the Conservancy's two Greenway Park Rangers interface with the public, compassionately ensuring a safe and welcoming park experience for all visitors. Rangers provide the wide range of people they encounter on a daily basis with the information and services they need, from the homeless and addicted, to visitors with limited English language skills, to the disabled and families with young children. Key program partners include the Pine Street Inn, Healthcare for the Homeless, Boston Police Department, and neighborhood organizations.

Population(s) Served

Where we work

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Top Rating 2013

Greenovate Award 2013

Boston Office of the Mayor

Winner, Arts & Entertainment, 50 on Fire 2013


Certified Wildlife Habitat 2012

National Wildlife Federation

Top Rating 2012

Top 50 public art projects - Os Gemeos mural 2013

Americans for the Arts

Top Rating 2014

40 Under 40 - Jesse Brackenbury, Executive Director 2014

Boston Business Journal

Excellence Award Finalist 2014

Massachusetts Nonprofit Network

Top Rating 2015

Top 50 public art projects - Shinique Smith mural 2015

Americans for the Arts

Best Public Art Space 2015

Improper Bostonian

10 Best Reader's Choice: 10 Best Urban Trails 2015


Editor's Choice Awards - Best Outdoor Stroll 2015

Yankee Magazine

Certificate of Excellence Winner 2015


Ten Outstanding Young Leaders - Jesse Brackenbury, Executive Director 2015

Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce

Named a Frontline Park 2013

City Parks Alliance

Top Rating 2016

Top 50 public art projects - Wandering Sheep, by Kyuseok Oh 2016

Americans for the Arts

Top 50 public art projects - May This Never End, by Matthew Hoffman 2017

Americans for the Arts

Top Rating 2017

Expert's Choice Award - Greenway Carousel 2017


Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

The goal of the Rose Kennedy Greenway Conservancy is to lead the Greenway's contemporary, urban park into its future as a vibrant, safe, welcoming, and innovative civic open space, strengthening its physical benefits and fostering a community in Boston. The Conservancy aims to connect the people and the city with beauty, fun, and inspiration. The Greenway Conservancy delivers a successful public park through four distinct areas: stewardship, activation, partnership, and innovation. Stewardship involves maintenance of the park - its hardscapes, furnishings, and its horticulture. Activation means offerings through programming and events that make the Greenway a vibrant place to visit. Partnership is collaborating with our surrounding communities. Innovation leads to efficiency and creativity in delivering the services, programs, events, and beauty of the Greenway. Stewardship. The Conservancy has a goal of delivering a consistently clean, highly functional and lush urban park at a level that makes both locals and visitors take notice. Activation. When visitors arrive on the Greenway, they should discover events and programs that entice a diverse audience, and provide entertainment, engagement and wonder. Partnership. The Greenway was built on public/private partnership and we commit to collaborating with city and state officials, surrounding neighborhood and business leaders, and visitors and locals, to create a thriving urban district. This commitment directly affects Boston's economy. With a community of partners, the Greenway stimulates tourism and provides a park that attracts both residential and commercial dwellers into the city. Innovation. We focus on delivering the beautiful, active, collaborative Greenway using the most innovative methods and ideas. Innovation creates efficiencies in park maintenance and management, and inspires programs and public art.

The Greenway horticultural staff uses sustainable, organic methods to manage the park. This means that a child can play on the Greenway's lush grass without contacting pesticides or chemicals. Greenway horticulture staff brew a compost tea (nutritionally rich, organic plant food) to maintain stunning and healthy gardens in the parks. The Greenway is the only park in New England managed solely with organic methods. Beyond award-winning organic care, the Conservancy has committed to horticultural upgrades that provide four seasons of beauty in the park. The Conservancy brings the highest level of maintenance care for the six fountains, complex lighting systems, and other features, assuring a safe, beautiful park. At five years old, the Conservancy is already planning capital maintenance of those items in the park showing excessive wear. We activate the Greenway with events and ongoing offerings. There are 300 free events annually, from fitness classes to farmers markets to concerts. We installed one of the largest free Wi-Fi networks in the Commonwealth, and we add new vendors annually to our Mobile Eats (food vendor) program. We make the park a world-class destination by offering a variety of public art, in conjunction with emerging and established artists, and partners such as the Institute for Contemporary Art, along the Greenway. In the next few years, we will showcase pioneering art projects that are larger in scope, to complement placemaking activities. Our signature Greenway Carousel opened to delighted visitors in fall 2013, and we will continue to make improvements to the parks that attract local and international visitors. Every year, we partner with a variety of businesses, neighbors, public and non-profit organizations for 300 free events like FIGMENT interactive art festival, Summer on the Waterfront, the farmers' and artisan markets, and concerts on the Greenway. As a young park in the heart of Boston, we take a long view for all of our decision-making. We consider the Greenway as a lunch spot, an urban garden, a neighborhood hub, an international art venue, and an economic engine for the city.

The Conservancy has a strong track record of leadership; our creative approach to activation—from the Greenway Carousel and the Mobile Eats program to free Wi-Fi—has made the Greenway a premiere destination. Moreover, we have deep knowledge of the site, proven experience in managing complex interagency interactions, and strong relationships with important stakeholders. Through programs, events, art, and collaboration, the Conservancy has solid examples of innovation. The Greenway Carousel at the Tiffany & Co Foundation Grove opened in 2013 to raves from local and national press and families; the Carousel is the most accessible in New England. We installed one of the largest free Wi-Fi networks in the Commonwealth. Our programming has tripled in four years and there are now 300 free annual events, from partners such as the FIGMENT (participatory art festival), Boston Public Market Association (farmers market), Berklee College (concert series), Sustainable Business Network (Boston Local Food Fest), and more. Our Mobile Eats Program has been celebrated in a Boston Globe editorial and in national publications like Travel + Leisure. Our strategy of temporary exhibitions of contemporary public art, including the award-winning Greenway Wall murals produced in partnership with the Institute of Contemporary Art, have sparked a citywide dialogue. We were one of BostInno's five Arts & Entertainment ""50 on Fire"" winners in 2013. The Conservancy is a highly successful public-private partnership. Since inception, we have raised a dollar and a half in philanthropy to supplement every dollar of public funding, and our business-minded approach to park amenities has grown the Conservancy's earned income over 500% in five years. With full responsibility for all operations, programming, and improvements in the park, we can deliver for our donors: the Greenway Carousel, which was 95% privately funded, was delivered on-time, on-budget, and exceeded public and donor expectations; a lead gift from the prestigious, brand-focused Tiffany & Co. Foundation was possible because they were entirely convinced that we would deliver a superior product. The Conservancy is the natural convener to bring together the BRA, MassDOT, community, political, business, and other stakeholders, with whom our relations are stronger than ever. As the sole entity responsible for Greenway operations and improvement, the Conservancy has deep knowledge of the park. From design and engineering studies (e.g., a schematic design for a passive landscape treatment), we have significant technical understanding- structural capacity of the tunnel infrastructure, ramp constraints, subsurface conditions, utilities, soil specs, etc. Years of conversations with neighbors provide a baseline understand of community desires.

We have delivered a stunning, active, well-maintained urban park for the past five years. Beyond this ideal, near term objectives include facility upgrades and repairs, diversification of planted areas of the park, events and programs that have wide appeal and engage partners, public art that widens Boston's cultural appeal, and new streams of revenue to create a financially sustainable organization. The Conservancy, at year five, is still working towards financial stability. We have no capital maintenance fund to cover the complexity of maintenance costs, which will rise as the parks age. The Conservancy is focused on growing philanthropy and earned revenue to cover the anticipated escalation in costs. Creating a safe, kind, welcoming space for all visitors is a goal that can be elevated by the presence of Greenway Park Rangers, which is another short-term objective. As a downtown, urban park, our maintenance and horticulture staff are deep into larger societal issues of homelessness and drug/alcohol use in the parks, without the benefit of training in these areas. We are eager to fund full time Rangers. The Conservancy is also focused on scaling our popular volunteer program. At 3,000 volunteer hours in 2013, we are now at a point when we need to focus on scaling both corporate and residential volunteer opportunities to handle more and more diverse audiences.


Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy Greenway Conservancy Inc.

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Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy Greenway Conservancy Inc.

Board of directors
as of 09/13/2022
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board co-chair

Mr. Jim Kalustian

Healthcare Entrepreneur

Term: 2016 -

Board co-chair

Kathryn Burton

Government Affairs Professional

Christine Manfredi

Former Partner, Wellington Management Co.

Helen Chin Schlichte

President Emeritus, South Cove Manor

Christopher Betke

Coughlin & Betke, LLP

James Chan

Office of City Councilor Bill Linehan

Jane Pappalardo

Community Arts Advocate

John Pregmon

Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education

Robyn Reed

Friends of Christopher Columbus Park

Jim Kalustian

Healthcare Entrepreneur

Beedee Ladd

Environmental Advocate

Kathryn Burton

Government Affairs Professional

Mark Boyle


Thomas O'Brien

The HYM Investment Group

Bud Ris

Former President and CEO, New England Aquarium

Kimberly Stamler

Related Beal

Daniel Sieger

Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs

Karen Johnson

The Debt Exchange

Susanne Lavoie

Wharf District Council

Bryant McBride


Robertstone Goodridge

Community Advocate

Alli Achtmeyer

Event Stylist

Cheng Tan

Chinatown Residents Association

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? No
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? No
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? No
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? No
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? No