Elawa Farm Commission


Elawa Farm is one of the last remaining and intact examples of estate farm architecture in the Midwest and is located adjacent to the ecologically significant Middlefork Savanna.  Rich in history and native Illinois surroundings, Elawa Farm brings new resources and expanded learning opportunities to Lake Forest.

Elawa Farm is a public-private partnership consisting of the Elawa Farm Commission and the Elawa Farm Foundation.

The Commission is composed of seven members.  Two members are recommended by the Foundation Board and five are nominated by the Lake Forest Caucus.  Nominees are appointed by the Mayor, with the approval of the City Council.   Members of this commission also serve on Commission’s Building and Grounds sub-committee as well as the Finance sub-committee.

Commissioners serve a 2 year term, up to a maximum of 3 terms.

Member of the Elawa Farm Foundation are appointed by its board.


Roles and Responsibilities

The Elawa Farm Commission is charged with serving as an advisory body to the City Council for establishing policies and standards concerning the preservation, restoration, re-use, operation and programming of the Elawa Farm Building Complex and Garden area.

Issues addressed by the committee include the following:

  • Review and make recommendations regarding annual operating budgets, capital improvement plans and budgets and strategic plans
  • Review of building and grounds improvement, maintenance and operations
  • Reviews rental and use agreements
  • Evaluate and advise City Council on the operations of the Elawa Farm Building Complex and Garden area, including their adherence to fiscally responsible practices and the applicable special use permits.
  • To serve as the City’s chief liaison between residents, organizations and other agencies to foster communication and cooperation between the City and such persons as it pertains to the Elawa Farm Building Complex and Garden area.



  • Financial acumen
  • Appreciation of the resources and learning opportunities of Elawa Farm


Time Commitment

  • The full commission meets 4 times a year at the Elawa Farm Complex.  Sub-committee’ will meet 1-2 weeks prior to the full commission meeting.
  • The estimated time commitment is 3-6 hours quarterly, including preparation and meeting every quarter.


Link to City website Elawa Farm Commission