PHS Names Matt Rader as New President

Rader, most recently a consultant for McKinsey, is a Pennsylvania native who grew up going to the Flower Show. He replaces Drew Becher, who left last year.

The Pennsylvania Horticultural Society has named Matt Rader its new president, the group announced today.

“I admire PHS’s leadership in empowering people to use horticulture as a way to build community and improve their neighborhoods, gardens and parks,” Rader said in a statement. “I’m grateful for the opportunity to bring to PHS my experience and personal passion for making cities better. With the incredible talent of PHS’s staff and partners and my background, we can continue to use horticulture to make this city and region a great place to live and a very exciting center of gardening and horticultural innovation and excellence.”

Rader replaces Drew Becher, who was president of PHS from 2010 until June of last year. Becher attracted his fair share of critics during his years as PHS president. It’s noteworthy that PHS did not bring in someone from outside the area for the hire; Rader has worked in several groups in Philadelphia in the past.

Rader is a native of Mercersberg, a Central Pennsylvania borough about 73 miles outside of Harrisburg. (It’s probably best known for the ritzy prep school Mercersberg Academy, which Rader attended.) According to PHS, he has been a frequent visitor of the Flower Show since he was a child. He went to the University of Virginia for his undergrad and has an MBA from Wharton. He was previously executive director of the Fairmount Park Historic Preservation Trust and the East Passyunk Avenue Business Improvement District. He has spent the past four years as a management consultant at McKinsey & Company in Philadelphia.

“PHS is primed to expand its programs that create more beautiful and sustainable communities in the years ahead, and Matt Rader is ideally suited to lead the organization in that work,” PHS board chair Margaret Sadler said in a release. “Matt has a proven track record of creating an environment that unifies others around a vision, goals, and their achievement.”

Rader is the 37th president of the 189-year-old organization. His term will begin January 11th.

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