Maple Grove Cemetery Launches Search for Its Next President

Historic Queens Nonprofit Selects DRG Talent Advisory Group to Identify Successor

The Center at Maple Grove Cemetery

 Maple Grove Cemetery announced today that it has opened its search for a president, in partnership with DRG Talent Advisory Group. Maple Grove is a historic non-sectarian rural cemetery in Kew Gardens, Queens that has been entrusted by New York City families for nearly 150 years. 

The president will provide strategic vision and leadership for the financially strong nonprofit, according to Robert Bethge, who heads the search effort for the cemetery's board of trustees. "The next leader will advance a master plan that enhances and preserves our historic monuments, architecture, and grounds, and that attends to the enduring needs of our member families," he said. The final phases of the architectural master plan will create additional memorial, interment, and burial options to serve Queens and New York families for decades to come.

The cemetery currently employs a 20-person team of full-time caretakers and family service associates, who will typically arrange 60 to 70 burials and interments each month.

DRG specializes in filling nonprofit executive leadership positions. Ami Abramson, their chief strategy officer, says that this role calls for a proven entrepreneurial leader with broad administrative capability. "This particular position requires a deep appreciation of cultural customs, a compassionate presence, and an individual with irrefutable integrity," he said.

"As a vibrant natural refuge in an urban setting, we have a fundamental responsibility to protect our earthly environment," said Fred Brownson, chairman of the Maple Grove Board of Trustees. "The next steward of the cemetery will guide our action towards environmental conservation and sustainability."

Bounded by Queens Boulevard, Lefferts Boulevard, and Kew Gardens Road, the cemetery covers 65-acres of monumented green space. It was laid out in the "rural cemetery" style of the mid-nineteenth century, with scenic winding paths through tree-laden hilly terrain. The original receiving tomb and an 1880 Victorian administration building were designed by noted New York City architect James Ware. A modern lawn cemetery section opened in 1943, and a striking memorial building designed by architect Peter Gisolfi, was added in 2009. Over fifteen decades, there have been nearly 100,000 interments. The cemetery remains a vital community operation to this day, offering family plots, garden mausoleums, and columbaria niches for urns. The tenth president of the Maple Grove Cemetery Association, Bonnie Thompson Dixon, has announced that she will retire in 2022, after more than a decade of service. Her leadership has been characterised by grace, enthusiasm for conservation of the cemetery, and preservation of the dignity of this hallowed place.

About Maple Grove Cemetery Association:
Founded in 1875 by Colonel William Cogswell, the Maple Grove Cemetery Association exists to serve families, preserve their heritage, and perpetually care for the cemetery. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, with its Victorian architecture, inspiring monuments, landscaped gardens, and a striking memorial center, Maple Grove Cemetery offers enduring remembrance and burial options for all faiths and traditions. Visit us online at

About DRG Search:
DRG Search is a talent advisory group that serves nonprofit organizations that care for, inspire, and enrich the lives of people all over the world. Their team of talent advisors share a commitment to the values that matter to their clients, bringing more than 34 years of experience to serving the nonprofit community. Since its founding in 1987, DRG Search has served over 1,000 clients throughout the nonprofit sector.

For more information, to apply, or to recommend someone for this opportunity, visit


Source: Maple Grove Cemetery