Board of Directors

POSITIVE NELSON is a spiritually, culturally, and socially conscious community activist. A former USVI senator, he is currently Commissioner of the Department of Agriculture.He founded and directs “Positive Works, Inc.,” a youth organization; created “OVILU,” an independent labor union; and founded and advised “Accountants on the Rise”, an accounting club at St. Croix Career and Technical Educational Complex where he taught accounting.

Positive also conducts annual events such as “Unity Retreat Camp,” Senior Citizen Brunch, Emancipation Day: Fort to Fort Walk, is an annual vendor at St. Croix Agriculture and Food Fair and is an inspirational and motivating speaker at numerous events. He has also farmed for the past seven years at Serenity’s Nest, his Zen Garden.

EUGENIA MERKOULOV has an educational background focused on the environment and sustainable agriculture combined with a lifetime of working with medicinal botanicals. She has been an active volunteer since joining the SGVBG Board in early 2020. She currently has two businesses, Earthbeat Herbals and Plant Medicine Yoga, and is completing a Master of Science in herbal medicine. She has a BA in Environmental Studies and a BA in Political Science.

JACKIE GOODYEAR  Jackie Goodyear has been a Garden board member since 2016.  Her family has supported the Garden for years before she became a part of the board, however, she became extra interested in being involved in the Botanical Garden after attending a couple of Garden Christmas galas. She believes the Garden is an important piece of the island and has found extreme interest in different types of native plants, especially because her historic property is home to many species, including some very unique ones.

Jackie and her soon-to-be husband David Johnson didn’t know at the time, but can look back now and laugh at the fact that they technically had their first date at a Garden Christmas Gala! Since then, they’ve had a 4 year old boy, and a 5 year old girl that were born on, and will continue to be raised on St. Croix. Jackie has a Bachelor of Science in Sociology/Criminal Justice, an Associate of Arts in Communication, an Associate of Arts in Social Science, and minors in Spanish, Psychology, and International Studies.


Yoga in the Garden

JOAN KUPFER Joan has been on SGVBG’s Board for about two years. She and her husband moved to the island many, many years ago with Hovensa, raising their twins here. Giving back to the community of St. Croix has always been a part of their lives on the island. Joan has been active on different Boards throughout her years on island. She dedicated many years to the St.Croix Swimming Association and enjoyed volunteer teaching with their learn-to-swim program. The Garden Board seemed to be a good fit for her as she expressed interest in working with children again.

Joan is happiest at the Garden volunteering as a chaperone on school field trips, seeing the Garden through the eyes of the children. She hopes to help develop more educational programs for children while serving on the Board.  Joan also brings a depth of knowledge on non-profit fundraising, having attended so many different events on island over the many years. She enjoys helping plan and execute some of the Garden’s social fundraising events and looks forward to focusing on planning more social events and activities to help grow the annual membership. She believes there is so much potential to have a very active large membership base as more and more people in the St. Croix community discover the Garden and realize what a gem it is.

THERESA COLLINGWOOD graduated from University of the VI in 1986, with a BA in Accounting. She began her internship at Brammar, Chasen, and O'Connell in 1985. Ms. Collingwood was promoted to the position of Tax Manager, in 1989. She remained in that role until becoming certified. In 2003, Theresa joined forces with her friend and colleague Vincent Anderson and they opened Collingwood, Anderson & Associates. After 5 wonderful and successful years, Mr. Anderson retired, and Collingwood & Associates, PC was formed. Over the last 17 years, Theresa has provided professional services to all aspects of the community. Her firm has over 400 clients ranging from corporations, estates, trusts, and nonprofit organizations, as well as individual clients. Collingwood & Associates is a small, woman owned practice, where their focus is on providing professional and personalized to each client.
Theresa has one son, Jomo, and one grandson, Zion. When she’s not busy serving her community, she enjoys working out, hiking, and traveling. She has visited countless Botanical Gardens all over the Caribbean, and is very proud to be a small part of making St George Village Botanical Garden a success.

STEVE GRIMES has been a dedicated volunteer at SGVBG since 2009. He has been a tour guide, a volunteer at Garden events large and small, and has used his working knowledge of building construction to help set up the room for The St. Croix Sea Shell Museum at The Garden and redesign interior space in the lower level of the manager’s house. His focus as a Board member is to further SGVBG’s efforts to fully become a “green” organization and find ways to save the garden money now and in the future.

A graduate of North Texas State University with a Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree, Steve retired after 30 years as an Interior Designer, a Professional Member of the American Society of Interior Designers.