In honor of Women’s History Month and her founding work on behalf of the National Association for Olmsted Parks (NAOP), Olmsted 200 has spotlighted Betsy Shure Gross in its March, 2023 newsletter. The wonderful video interview touches on how Olmsted has impacted her life, why forming NAOP was necessary, and who dreamed up the idea of the Olmsted 200 initiative.
“Betsy Shure Gross grew up playing in Olmsted parks, but it wasn’t until she moved a block and a half from Boston’s Emerald Necklace that she fully realized who Olmsted was and his importance.”
‘The most exquisite component of Olmsted’s vision for me is the fact that his parks are places where there really is democracy in dirt, where everyone is welcome…It’s one of the few places left in society where you can spend as much time as you want and have no cost except for interest and commitment. So, his vision of parks for people— all kinds of people— was always critical for me.’
“The years that followed Gross’ move to Boston were some of the most significant in the movement to restore and protect historic landscapes— and she was there for them all. In Boston, she witnessed the National Park Service acquire Fairsted and its incredible collection of archives. She joined like-minded individuals to create the National Association for Olmsted Parks, and she traveled the country to meet government officials and advocate for the protection of Olmsted parks and places.”
’My entire professional life but also my personal life has been influenced by Mr. Olmsted. Part of the process of getting to know scholars and preservationists and community activists meant that we created a network that’s both professional and personal.’
Watch Betsy’s full interview here: http://bit.ly/3TlyltI