Diane Ott Whealy
Diane Ott Whealy is the co-founder of Seed Savers Exchange and presently serves as Vice President of Education. For more than 35 years, Diane has been a national leader in the heirloom seed movement and a strong advocate for the protection of the earth's rare genetic food stocks. Founded in 1975 as a non-profit organization, Seed Savers Exchange has more than 13,000 members, made up of gardeners, orchardist, chefs and plant collectors, dedicated to the preservation and distribution of heirloom varieties of vegetables, fruits, grains, flowers and herbs. With thousands of varieties in its collection, Seed Savers is one of the largest non-governmental seed banks in the United States. In 1986 Diane helped to develop Heritage Farm, Seed Saver's scenic 890-acre headquarters near Decorah Iowa. Heritage Farm is a unique educational center designed to maintain and display collections of endangered food crops. Diane also founded the Flower and Herb Exchange where members offer over 2000 heirloom flowers and herbs for exchange each year. She is the author of Gathering: Memoir of a Seed Saver (2011).