published November 11, 2011

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The beautifully landscaped grounds of Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden
are a South Florida travel destination.

News About AOS Headquarters

Several years ago, the AOS Board of Trustees began the process of giving the Society the flexibility necessary to take advantage of strategic partnerships when they arose. Part of that process was the sale of the Society’s Headquarters facility in Palm Beach County Florida. At the end of October, 2011, the Palm Beach County Board of Commissioners gave its approval to rezoning of our property paving the way for completing the sale to the Slomin Foundation. The Slomin Foundation intends to create a school and family center for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder while preserving the gardens and building with only minimal modifications. At the present time, we expect the sale to be finalized November 30, 2011.

We are very pleased to announce that the AOS is actively negotiating to bring its international headquarters, following the sale of the property, to Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden in Coral Gables (Miami); the acclaimed conservation and education-based botanic garden and a recognized international leader in both Florida and international conservation. With our shared commitment to conservation, education, and research, we are joining forces to ensure the perpetuation and appreciation of orchids in North America and throughout the world.

“The missions of AOS and Fairchild Garden are perfectly aligned,” said Ron McHatton, Chief Operating Officer of AOS. “With Fairchild’s international reputation, we have found a financially strong, solid strategic partner equally focused on horticulture, education and conservation.” Both groups will remain independent and autonomous, fulfilling their own missions, sharing administrative space in Fairchild Garden’s corporate offices.

Founded in 1938, Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden has more than 45,000 members. For over three decades, Fairchild Garden has effectively educated and inspired hundreds of thousands of students and members of the community throughout South Florida and the U.S. Fairchild’s education programs provide unique opportunities for students of all ages to learn about the natural world, appreciate the beauty and value of nature, and promote environmental literacy and stewardship. Using the environment as an integrating concept, Fairchild offers a diversity of programs for students in grades pre-K through 12 that aim to enhance science education through interdisciplinary, inquiry-based learning. These programs are the result of cooperative efforts, led by seasoned educators on staff and involving input from program volunteers, teachers, students, science and curriculum specialists from Miami Dade County, Miami-Dade County Public Schools, Florida International University, the University of Florida, the USDA and Fairchild’s research and horticulture staff. For more information, visit