Duron Chavis

Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden

As Manager of Community Engagement at Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden, Duron coordinates innovative and dynamic initiatives around the topics of urban agriculture and food security in a culturally relevant way. Duron administrates the Ginter Urban Gardener program, a 12-week, neighborhood-centric community greening training and cultivates collaboration and partnership for the creation and sustainability of public greenspaces through Beautiful RVA, a cross-sector, multi-disciplinary social movement dedicated to creating a more beautiful Richmond Region.

Duron started his career in community advocacy as first a volunteer and later as an employee of the Black History Museum and Cultural Center of VA.. In 2003 he founded the highly acclaimed Happily Natural Day festival as a grassroots effort to supplement the summer jazz concert that was held annually at the institution. The festival is a weekend-long experience focuses on cultural identity for people of African Ancestry, holistic health, wellness and social change. In 2009 Duron launched the Richmond Noir Market, a Saturday pop-up farmer’s market targeting low-income communities located in what the USDA has designated as food deserts in Richmond, VA. In 2012 he developed McDonough Community Garden; and began transforming green spaces throughout the Richmond Region into urban gardens, farms, orchards, and vineyards.