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Owner, Creative Director
MARY PAT BROWN
Welcome. I was born in Nova Scotia, grew up outside Washington D.C., and moved out West directly upon graduating from the University of Virginia in 2000 with a degree in Sociology. I worked in the mental health field for several years, during which time I met my now adult adoptive daughter. I had the privilege of teaching skiing in Telluride for many years and found landscaping a natural complement. I became fascinated with the medicinal, functional and artistic value of plants and studied under several master gardeners, learning all I could about high altitude gardening. As I learned, I slowly started taking on projects myself, building the skills that allowed me to work for myself gardening when I moved to Denver to marry my husband. We have since become a vehicle for exceptionally hard working and talented people to create truly awesome plant art. I am constantly inspired by our staff and thankful for our clients who have allowed us to grow. We have been fortunate to be able to purchase a home in the Roaring Fork Valley and are now opening our second branch of GFD in this beautiful valley. I am so very happy to be returning home to the Western Slope and offering our organic services in my favorite region in the world!
I grew up on a farm outside Seattle, WA where I developed many skills for designing and building landscape features. I have always loved the outdoors. I started landscaping as my non-winter job while living in Telluride, CO and living for winter. After Mary Pat moved to Denver to marry me, she created Great Fortune Design. I finished my second degree in May 2018, with a BS in Mechanical Engineering from University of Colorado, Denver and went to work as an engineer. Watching our new family business grow and develop, and slightly frustrated with the monotony and simplicity of my engineering position, I left my first engineering firm to join Great Fortune Design. I have since performed as much engineering work for GFD as I did at the engineering firm; designing landscapes in CAD, calculating irrigation flows and retaining wall stability. I greatly enjoy the challenges and diversity of work presented by owning a company, which includes both the logistics of the business and in the field installation crew supervision and labor. Great Fortune Design is a beautiful combination of art and technical design. I am proud of our team. I look forward to growing GFD.
I was raised in Maine and spent most of the first few decades on the East Coast. I went to Oberlin College in Ohio studying Psychology and upon graduation felt due for an urban experience. I moved to New York and began shuffling obediently down a career path. The joy of these years was inspired by the city and by my own precious youth - never for a moment did my work inspire me.
I have always kept houseplants, finding they enhanced the energy of the spaces they inhabited, as well as my own sense of well being. When I came to Colorado, I started volunteering to pull weeds in Washington Park and fell quite organically into the magical world of plants. I marveled at how time disappears in the moment and yet also feels well spent at the day's end. This was a long way from basement labs and research papers- now I'm covered in dirt and completely at peace.
I am so grateful to have found a home at Great Fortune; a team that channels my enthusiasm and supports me as I learn. I feel a new sure footedness and a confidence that more will be revealed along the way.
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