About the speaker

Jessica Baumert is the Executive Director of The Woodlands Cemetery in West Philadelphia. She has a degree in historic preservation from Savanah College of Art and Design and fell in love with historic cemeteries as a 21 year old while learning to repair aging headstones. After graduating, Jessica followed her love of preservation to Philadelphia. For ten years, she helped care for the historic structures of Philadelphia’s Fairmount Park. An avid fan of gardening, public spaces, and old stuff, Jessica knew she would be able to bring big changes to the The Woodlands. She took over the organization in the fall of 2011, and has been creating programs like the nationally renowned Grave Gardeners ever since. She has increased yearly visitorship to over 40,000 people, and has cultivated a renewed sense of community within the 54-acre necropolis.

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