Emily Rose Haga is a gardener, seed saver, and plant breeder. Her love for plants was sown by her Appalachian grandmother, whose stories and foodways imprinted her heart with seeds that quickly sprouted into a healthy curiosity about where food comes from and how it’s grown. This early interest was further nurtured while working at local CSA farms and health food co-ops in Wisconsin, which inspired her to pursue a BS in Horticulture and MS in Plant Breeding & Genetics at UW-Madison. After graduating, she went on to create new and improved varieties of peppers and tomatoes at Johnny’s Selected Seeds, helping meet the needs of mixed market farmers and avid home gardeners by selecting specialty types for organic adaptations. She then served as the Executive Director at Seed Savers Exchange, a non-profit organization dedicated to preserving and sharing America’s heirloom and open-pollinated garden heritage. Currently she continues to support the organic seed community as an advisor and plant breeding consultant, also volunteering her time to UW-Madison’s WARF/WCIA/CALS Germplasm Committee in support of public plant breeding and OSA’s board to help further their mission in advancing ethical seed solutions.
Cathleen McCluskey is the outreach director at Organic Seed Alliance. Cathleen supports OSA communications, and coordination of regional and national outreach efforts, and is the chair of the biennial Organic Seed Growers Conference.