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Floral Diplomacy


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About the Author

Laura Dowling is an award-winning florist and designer. She is the recipient of the American Horticultural Society's Great American Gardener Award" for achievements and contributions in floristry and is a featured speaker at leading flower shows, museums and cultural institutions across the country. In 2016, she received the Distinguished Flower Ambassador" award from the Royal Horticultural Society of Belgium at a ceremony honoring international floral diplomacy in Ghent, Belgium. A native of Chehalis, Washington, Laura received her B.A. degree in political science and Masters Degree in Public Administration from the University of Washington in Seattle. Fifteen years ago, Laura was inspired to change careers (from strategic communications to flowers) after traveling to Paris and becoming intrigued with French flower design. She studied French floral art under the direction of leading Parisian designers and operated a small studio out of her basement kitchen. From this position, Laura competed in the nation-wide search for White House Chief Floral Designer and won, proof that identifying and following a passion can lead to extraordinary things. By expanding her floral design and consulting platform to include writing books and teaching, Laura's goal is to continue to share a unique vision for creative floristry in the garden style and to inspire others with her story.


Dowling had opened her own flower design studio specializing in French-style bouquets in 2002, after a career in government and public policy. She left the White House job in 2015, setting off a flurry of speculation. 'I was brought in to make change, and I did,' Dowling says. 'It was time to start thinking about what I would do next.' What that has been is lecturing, teaching classes and writing a book, 'Floral Diplomacy at the White House.' Washington Post

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