Dallas Arboretum Leader Tapped as Kaleidoscope Park Executive Director

Shawn Jackson served at the Arboretum for more than a decade in a variety of roles, most recently as chief operating officer and interim CEO. She will begin her new role at Frisco's Kaleidoscope Park on May 28.

Longtime Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden executive Shawn Jackson has been named as executive director of Kaleidoscope Park in Frisco, the Kaleidoscope Park Foundation’s board of directors announced.

Jackson served at the Arboretum for more than a decade in a variety of roles, most recently as chief operating officer and interim CEO. Jackson will begin her new role at Kaleidoscope Park on May 28, the foundation said.

“It was important for us to find a leader for Kaleidoscope Park who understood both the city of Frisco and Collin County and could deftly navigate the nuances of a public-private partnership such as this one,” Florence Shapiro, Kaleidoscope Park Foundation’s board chair, said in a statement. “Shawn has spent the last two decades as a Frisco resident and raised her family here. She has a clear vision of how the city and its residents, as well as the region overall, can enjoy and utilize Kaleidoscope Park as a destination in their daily lives.”

Experienced in fundraising and engaging with stakeholders

During her 11-year tenure at the Dallas Arboretum, Jackson made a significant impact on its growth and development. Among her key accomplishments are facilitating volunteer and community engagement for the opening of the Rory Meyer’s Children’s Adventure Garden, bringing the Arboretum’s dazzling new holiday experience to life and ensuring that the Arboretum remained solvent during the pandemic. She also served as the Arboretum’s interim CEO during its national search for a new leader.

Jackson said she plans to use her accomplishments and skills to impact the completion and opening of Kaleidoscope Park, which is slated for later this year. Jackson also will be integral to Kaleidoscope Park Foundation’s fundraising efforts, securing major gifts and future naming rights to ensure the sustained growth and success of the park, the foundation said.

“One of my greatest joys is helping bring a project to life and see it to fruition, and then to watch guests light up as they experience the creation you helped to build,” Jackson said in a statement. “Kaleidoscope Park provides a blank slate with virtually limitless programming opportunities. I can’t imagine a more exciting time to be in Frisco and to lead this team.”

In her capacity as the COO at Dallas Arboretum, Jackson served as a key liaison between the Arboretum’s stakeholders, including the city of Dallas, the Dallas Parks & Recreation Board, and the Dallas Arboretum board of directors.

As a part of the committee that selected Jackson to lead Kaleidoscope Park, Communities Foundation of Texas CEO Wayne White said he saw in Jackson a unique set of skills and competencies perfect to bring this important project to fruition.

“Shawn is a seasoned executive with an incredible track record that will directly benefit the work of the Park. The depth of her knowledge in building, executing, and scaling operations and programs will take the work of Kaleidoscope Park to the next level as we chart towards the opening of the Park and beyond,” White said in a statement.

‘Recipe for success’

Jackson said she sees great possibilities in what Kaleidoscope Park will bring to the Frisco community.

“As a Frisco resident, I’ve watched the development of Kaleidoscope Park with great excitement. We’ve never had a public green space like this in Frisco,” Jackson said. “The collaboration among all of our stakeholders, including the City of Frisco, Kaleidoscope Park Foundation, Communities Foundation of Texas, and HALL Park is very important and a key to our recipe for success.”

Kaleidoscope Park is made possible via a public-private partnership among Kaleidoscope Park Foundation, Communities Foundation of Texas, and the city of Frisco. The partnership provides the synergies required to develop such a unique asset and destination, the foundation said. The Park is part of a larger development that includes The Monarch at HALL Park residences, HALL Park Hotel, The Tower at HALL Park office building and a new eatery.

The nearly 6-acre Kaleidoscope Park is near the intersection of the Dallas North Tollway and Warren Parkway in Frisco and is near The Star, Stonebriar Centre, Legacy West, The Shops at Legacy, and The Boardwalk at Granite Park.

Get on the list.
Dallas Innovates, every day.

Sign up to keep your eye on what’s new and next in Dallas-Fort Worth, every day.

One quick signup, and you’re done.  

R E A D   N E X T