Gardens for Growing Community (G4GC) is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization founded in 2015 to
help youth in under-served communities connect with and value their natural environment.

Recognizing the growing popularity of school gardens, G4GC set out to help schools develop their sites;
however, we soon became concerned about their sustainability. We saw a more critical need for consistent
and skilled site "champions" who can keep outdoor classrooms thriving, abundant and attractive year-round.
We also discovered that teachers who do champion outdoor experiences often feel isolated in their effort.
When we dug deeper, we realized it wasn't usually a lack of interest that kept their counterparts inside, rather a misperception that only Science can be taught outdoors, a lack of gardening confidence, and at some level, a fear of stepping outside their comfort zones.

                                                       So G4GC expanded its support services to engage members of the local and greater community to address these
                                                       challenges. As a result, we're increasing the number of schools that successfully connect nature and academic 
                                                       learning, and we're growing an exciting network of people from diverse communities who share their skills,
                                                       experiences and love of nature with students young and old.

                                              Gardens for Growing Community is encouraging young people to become engaged and ecologically literate
                                              stewards  of their community's natural assets.
                                                     - School Gardens
                                                     - Forest Classrooms
                                                     - Experiential Learning, Community Mentoring & Volunteerism

                                                     - Project-based, Inquiry-based & Standards-based Teaching

                                                     - Title 1 School & Home School Enrichment
                                                     - Community Service Credit

G4GC is creating and developing thriving school gardens and forest pockets that serve as experiential learning centers, and we're offering opportunities for volunteers and an apprenticed workforce to help sustain these venues and related programming.

- Urban & Rural Agriculture/Horticulture Learning Opportunities
- Biointensive, Natural & Aero/Hydro/Aquaponics Food Production Methods
- Nature-based Academics for Special Ed & General Ed Students, Grades K-12
- Job Skills Development for Transitioning Military Veterans
- Teacher Coaching & Professional Development Workshops

“To plant a garden is to believe in tomorrow.”
- Audrey Hepburn


  1. Tixie Fowler
    Tixie Fowler
    Connecting & empowering people is Tixie's passion, along with being out in the wild! She is an Environmental Educator, Master Gardener & a certified Permaculturist, with a career in Public Relations/Marketing & community place-making.
  2. Terry Sutton
    Terry Sutton
    Decades of experience in garden management, urban forestry & environmental stewardship have inspired Terry to practice permaculture & Biointensive Growing. He designs & grows our gardens & is the "research guru" for resources & opportunities!
  3. Dorothy Parker-Jarrett
    Dorothy Parker-Jarrett
    As the principal of an award-winning middle school, Dorothy's passion for excellence defines our program standards & ability to effectively support the public school system's goals. She motivates us all, inspiring kids to learn & teachers to lead the way.


Chair: Dorothy Parker-Jarrett, Gwinnett County Public Schools, Summerour Middle School
Secretary/CPA: Ranae Heaven, Heaven & Associates, Inc. CPA
Board Member: Greg Tefertiller, Marketing Director, Send Relief at North American Mission Board
Board Member: Tony Gobert, Educator, Horticulture & Urban Agriculture, Gwinnett Technical College
Board Member: Jose Perez, Target Market Trends, semi-retired serving in Advisory Capacity and Teaching Economics


Robert Ayers, III (retired) Educator, Middle School Science (30 years), Gwinnett Master Gardener
Jon Davis RLA, LEED AP, Community Development & Planning Director, City of Norcross, Georgia
Krista deKryger Non-Profit Executive Leader, Educator, Chief Communications Officer, VETLANTA
Lynne Harbin Deputy Chief Business Officer, Dept of Veterans Affairs
Dana Jewel Harris  Executive Director, NEXTSteps Youth Program
Dr. Debra Leigh Walls Rosenstein  Associate Professor, Tift College of Education - Atlanta, Dept. of Graduate Studies, Mercer University
Terry Sutton Founder/President, Cascade Springs Forestry, Inc.
Denise Townsend Regional Director, United Way of Greater Atlanta

Executive Director Profile: Tixie Fowler

Gardens for Growing Community, Inc. 501(3)c Founder, Director, October 2014 – current
Public Relations & Marketing Manager, City of Norcross, Georgia April 2009 – August 2014
Whistle Stop Farmers Market, Owner/Manager, May, 2009 – 2014
Entreprenuer in Sales, Business Development and Strategic Marketing Consulting services, January, 1997 - April, 2009
National Marketing Communications Manager, Pameco Corp, June, 1991 – December, 1996
Director of Marketing, American Technical Services, Inc. 1990 – 1991
Independent Video & Film Producer, Scriptwriter 1988 – 1990
Creative Director, Summerhouse Advertising, Inc. 1984 – 1988
A complete resume is available here
American Technical Services, Inc. Director of Marketing, 1990 – 1991

Environmental Educator, Summerour Middle School, Lilburn Middle School
Certified Master Gardener (University of Georgia, Gwinnett Extension)
Certified Educator for MG Sprouts program (Georgia Master Gardener Advanced Training, grades 1 - 5)
Certified Educator for  Georgia Project WET, WILD and Project Learning Tree programs (GA Dept of Natural Resources, grades K - 12)
Certification pending: EEA of GA Environmental Educator (Environmental Education Alliance of Georgia, advanced training)
Certified Permaculturist (Shades of Green Permaculture Design, Inc.)
Georgia School Garden Network, Member
Metro Atlanta Earth Team (USDA/NRCS, Upper Ocmulgee division) member
Southwest Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce, Member, Executive Board of Directors (and member of Community Connections Committee)
Norcross Garden Club, active member


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