National Trust names Flossmoor architect as new executive director for Farnsworth House

The National Trust for Historic Preservation announced on April 5 that Scott Mehaffey of Flossmoor has been selected as executive director of the Farnsworth House, a National Trust Historic Site located in Plano.

  Scott Mehaffey

“We are thrilled to welcome Scott as we continue the preservation and evolution of Farnsworth House,” said Katherine Malone-France, vice president for historic sites at the National Trust for Historic Preservation. “Scott brings energy, enthusiasm and a strong desire to expand Farnsworth House programs and outreach at the local, national and international level, along with many years of practical experience managing and developing historic properties.”

First conceived by world-renowned architect Mies van der Rohe in 1945 and completed in 1951, the Farnsworth House is an icon of modern architecture and continues to inspire artists and designers around the world. The home was built as a country retreat for Dr. Edith Farnsworth.

“I am looking forward to guiding this internationally renowned historic site into its next phase of development as we work to protect and maintain Farnsworth House and its setting for the coming generations,” Mehaffey said. “It’s an honor to work for The National Trust, and I am particularly impressed by their dedication to preserving the site’s historic integrity in the face of a changing climate.”

Mehaffey's 30-year career of public- and private-sector leadership includes positions with The Morton Arboretum and the City of Chicago. He has been involved in historic site management, strategic planning and development and community outreach and programming.

He is an adjunct professor in the College of Architecture at the Illinois Institute of Technology, where he teaches graduate level courses in Modernism and the Prairie School.  Most recently, Mehaffey headed his own landscape architecture firm based in Flossmoor and led efforts to revitalize the historic commercial district in his home town of Princeton.

He holds a Bachelor of Landscape Architecture degree from the University of Illinois College of Fine and Applied Arts and a Master of Science degree in Organizational Leadership from Dominican University. 

He has been active in the fields of cultural landscape preservation and architectural history and is a frequent speaker, writer and tour guide on these subjects. He has also held leadership positions with the American Public Gardens Association and the American Society of Landscape Architects. 

Farnsworth House has been owned by the National Trust for Historic Preservation since 2003 and operated by the organization since 2010.

The Farnsworth House welcomes more than 15,000 visitors per season and hosts a variety of tours, programs and special events. Tours are offered Tuesdays through Sundays from April through November and may be booked at


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