Photo courtesy of Dallas Arboretum. From right to left: Tom and Phyllis McCasland, Melissa Sadler and Cameron McCasland.

The Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden held its Great Contributors Gala fundraising event Dec. 5, honoring Preston Hollow neighbors Phyllis and Tom McCasland, as well as Sue Ringle (posthumous) and Carolyn and Al Olson.

The McCaslands are natives of Oklahoma. Tom grew up in Duncan and Phyllis in Blackwell.  They met at The University of Oklahoma and married after graduation. Tom had a career in the oil business, and both of them were also involved in banking. Phyllis was a real estate salesperson, became a Master Gardener and wrote gardening articles for the local newspapers. After retiring and turning the family business over to their son, the couple moved to Preston Hollow where they are active in many organizations, including the Dallas Arboretum. They have been instrumental in the continued expansion and transformation of the Arboretum, funding the renovation of the Sunken Garden, providing the seed money for the Chihuly exhibition, as well as envisioning and providing funding and support for “The 12 Days of Christmas” celebration. They also purchased land for the parking garage and partially underwrote the initial loan for the project. They provided the money for the land purchase for the new greenhouses, paid for fencing, security, utilities, communications and a portion of the greenhouses with a challenge grant to encourage others to complete the greenhouse construction as it is today. The Dallas Arboretum Executive Committee voted to name the Horticulture Center and acreage in honor of them.

Click to sign up for the Advocate's weekly news digest and be the first to know what’s happening in Preston Hollow.