How the Oklahoma City Community Foundation Turned One Woman’s Simple Gift Into Lasting Support for Community Beautification

When Oklahoma City schoolteacher Margaret Annis Boys entrusted her estate to the Oklahoma City Community Foundation in 1991, she launched a perpetual effort to enhance and activate every inch of our community’s parks and public spaces. She had long admired Oklahoma’s native landscapes and left a gift in her will along with the simple instruction to create a permanent endowment to beautify public lands in Oklahoma County.

Margaret Annis Boys poses in front of a quilt.
Margaret Annis Boys

Today, the Margaret Annis Boys Trust continues to enhance our community through the Oklahoma City Community Foundation’s Parks & Public Space Initiative. Since 1991, more than $4.5 million in grants has been awarded to municipalities, park departments, neighborhood associations, public schools and other community groups for hundreds of projects to improve public lands in central Oklahoma.

This collaboration may be best showcased at the Margaret Annis Boys Arboretum at Will Rogers Gardens. Located at Northwest 36th Street and Grand Boulevard, the 10-acre public arboretum and gardens feature hundreds of tree varieties dating back to the 1930s. The Oklahoma City Community Foundation has supported a number of improvements to the arboretum including a more accessible walking trail, planting more than 100 new trees and the installation of signage to help residents learn about the tree species that grow well in central Oklahoma. In addition, an endowment at the Oklahoma City Community Foundation supports the long-term maintenance and care of the arboretum, ensuring this urban oasis continues to adorn our city for years to come.

Miss Boys’ generous, yet simple gift illustrates how anyone can make a lasting difference in their community. To learn more about how the Oklahoma City Community Foundation can help you impact the causes you care about most, contact us at 405/235-5603.