Meet Sarah Weiner.
Sarah has crafted a purpose-full career around her love for food and the environment.
Her life, profession, and passion are all one thing. Her enthusiasm for food is contagious.
As a Kid
She loved food… and the environment.
As a toddler, she loved the taste of food. In high school, she found a means of expression through food: she spent most weekends baking and reading Saveur magazine. At this time, she experienced the transmission of love through food, when she created a chocolate hazelnut pyramid dessert for a family friend who was suffering from cancer.
Her childhood hero was Jane Goodall. Sarah's love for science and the environment grew after she dissected her first squid in 5th grade. She then began conducting a series of science experiments from her home garage.
Trial and Error
Wanting to follow the steps of her childhood hero, she took a biology class her first year of college: She hated it. Instead, she found a love for economics. In classes full of prospective bankers, her aim was still to open up a restaurant.
During college, she spent most summers working the line at a few restaurant kitchens. She was there for the love of food, and she soon recognized that not everyone was there for the same reasons. She realized that restaurant kitchens were not her scene.
At this time, the only options available in the food world were to become a chef or a food writer. She was not a writer.
She did not always know
She did not always know the options that were available for her.
At the time she graduated from high school there was not a food movement.
Her job did not always exist.
One day, she received the 'Slow Food Collected Essays' in the mail. This book crystallized for her everything she had ever cared about: food and the environment. For the first time, she was able to connect the dots between two worlds she had deeply cared about. Soon after, she applied for a grant to travel and study the economics of slow food in Italy.
While studying in Italy, she met Alice Waters at a 'Slow Food' dinner in the ruins of Pompeii. Alice was a world renowned food activist and soon became Sarah's mentor. Sarah worked with Alice, and then became the first staff person at 'Slow Food Nation,' to date the largest sustainable food event ever held in America.
If someone is doing something that is interesting to me, I try to get close to them, and do whatever helps them, because then I get to have them around, and learn what makes them successful.
Sarah is the director of Seedlings Projects, a do-tank for the sustainable food movement. They run the Good Food Merchants' Guild and the Good Food Awards to support local artisanal food production and farm-to-table consumption.