Up Front with Sara Parker Pauley

By Sara Parker Pauley | September 1, 2022
From Missouri Conservationist: September 2022

For years, I was a faithful listener to the radio show Car Talk, hosted by brothers and MIT graduates Tom and Ray Magliozzi. Known affectionately as Click and Clack, the Tappet brothers mixed diagnostic advice on ailing cars with humor and a touch of psychology. Utilizing Tom’s technical skill, Ray’s humor, along with playful banter with their guests, they made the world of cars captivating and the radio show award-winning. 

I thought of that chemistry recently when touring MDC’s Anita B. Gorman Conservation Discovery Center in Kansas City with two of MDC’s landscape specialists, Cydney Ross and Alix Daniel, both of whom have lent their magic to the beautiful grounds. Cydney’s background in art and design, combined with Alix’s landscaping experience and a shared contagious passion for native plants, makes them a dynamic duo in the world of native landscaping. (Catch their monthly podcast, Native Plants at Noon — Deep Roots and learn more about growing natives on Page 11.)

I’m so fortunate in my role to be surrounded by such passionate professionals, like this magnetic twosome, who would get so excited about a blooming plant, migrating songbird, or newly discovered insect, that they would often forget about those touring with them in their gleeful discoveries and chatter with each other. Cydney told me later, “What I love most about my job is that I get to inspire people to find as much joy in native plants as I’ve found.”  Mission accomplished Cydney and Alix.

Sara Parker Pauley, Director



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This Issue's Staff

Magazine Manager - Stephanie Thurber
Editor - Angie Daly Morfeld
Associate Editor - Larry Archer
Photography Editor - Cliff White
Staff Writer - Kristie Hilgedick
Staff Writer - Joe Jerek
Staff Writer – Dianne Van Dien
Designer - Shawn Carey
Designer - Marci Porter
Photographer - Noppadol Paothong
Photographer - David Stonner
Circulation Manager - Laura Scheuler