Ben Flanner is the head farmer, CEO, and co-founder of Brooklyn Grange rooftop Farm, based in New York City. A pioneering urban farm operation, the business produces vegetables, herbs, and honey on over 2 ½ acres of intensive green roofs, and sells its produce via restaurants, farmer’s markets, and CSAs. Brooklyn Grange is widely recognized as a world leader in rooftop agriculture and as an exceptional green and community minded business. Prior to founding the Brooklyn Grange, Ben co-founded and managed the Eagle Street Rooftop farm. He has a BS degree in Industrial Engineering from the University of Wisconsin, and prior experience in management consulting and marketing. 

The Brooklyn Grange received the LICBDC Green Business Award in 2010, the Green Roofs for Healthy Cities Award of Excellence in 2011, and Queens Community Business Award from Mayor Bloomberg’s office in 2012.  Ben was born and raised in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and currently resides in Brooklyn, New York.

Jennifer Grossman.  With more than 20 years of strategic environmental legal work in both the public and not-for-profit sectors, Jennifer is a conservation consultant in her own firm, working with the Natural Resources Defense Council on a Regional Foodshed Initiative to establish sustainable economic growth via local agriculture by forging collaborative platforms between rural and urban communities.  She is the founder/president of FarmCo New York, a Catskill-based company creating economically-viable and environmentally-conscious family farm business ventures, including Mauer’s Mountain Farms, the first and only New York State farm raising heritage French Jumbo Guinea Hen.  She is also a founding partner of Longdrift, an ecotourism company providing unique angling adventures in Argentina.

Jennifer previously was for 11 years Vice President for Land Acquisition of the Open Space Institute, where she oversaw a multimillion-dollar budget preserving more than 100,000 acres of critical natural landscapes throughout New York State through creative farmland and watershed protection strategies, partnerships with government and landowners, and alliances with academic institutions and NGO partners.  From 1993 to 2000, Jennifer was a Senior Attorney at the Office of General Counsel for the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation, serving as lead counsel for the Lands & Forest Program and also counseling on hazardous waste and pesticide matters.  

Jennifer sits on the board of the Norcross Wildlife Foundation, the Atlantic Salmon Federation, the Watershed Agricultural Council, Slow Money NYC and the Solution Project. She holds a J.D from Boston University School of Law and a joint B.A. in English Literature & Rhetoric and Political Science from Binghamton University. 

Tattfoo Tan’s art practice seeks to find an immediate, direct and effective way of exploring issues related to the individual in society, through which we collapse the categories of ‘art’ and ‘life’ into one. Through the employment of multiple forms of media and various platforms of presentation, Tattfoo promotes group participation between himself and an ‘audience’. Within this collaborative practice, both minds and bodies are engaged in actions that transform the making of art into a ritualized and shared experience. In keeping with the spirit of this transformative act, Tattfoo prefers to develop projects that are ephemeral and conceptual in nature.

Tattfoo has presented, collaborated and shown his works in various venues and institutions including: Staten Island Arts, Queens Museum of Art, Tenement Museum, The City of New York Department of Cultural Affairs Percent for the Arts, Eugene Lang College/New School for Liberal Arts, Artisphere, Parsons the New School for Design, Fashion Institute of Technology, 601Tully/Syracuse University, Macalester College, Pratt Institute, Aljira - A Center for Contemporary Art, Project Row Houses, Smack Mellon, Contemporary Arts Center - Cincinnati, Robert Rauschenberg Foundation, Marfa Ballroom and The Laundromat Project.

He has been recognized for his effort, service and artistic contributions to the community, and is a proud recipient of proclamation from The City of New York. He was also given the Twenty-Eighth Annual Award for Excellence in Design by Public Design Commission of The City of New York for his design and branding of the Super-Graphic on Bronx River Art Center.

Kelly Taylor got his start in the brewing industry in 1991 at Karl Strauss Breweries in San Diego, where he worked in the brewery and restaurant through college. In 1994, he designed and built the 7BBL Eagle Brewing Company in his hometown of Mukilteo WA, and brewed for the 15BBL Glacier Peak Brewing Co/ Flying Pig Brewery in nearby Everett. In 1995 he became Head Brewer and General Manager at Whidbey Island Brewing Company of Langley, WA, overseeing brewery production, brewpub construction, and expansion to Seattle and North County markets. In 1996 Kelly left Whidbey Island to work with Pyramid Breweries in their Special Events/Marketing department in downtown Seattle, and was on the training staff that opened the Pyramid facility in Berkeley, CA later that year. In 1998, Kelly moved to New York, where he eventually became Head Brewer at the Heartland Brewery restaurant group. In 2002 he designed, built, and brewed at the Heartland facility in Brooklyn, and in 2006 launched KelSo. Kelly currently oversees production for the entire Heartland Brewery group, and runs KelSo Beer Co out of their facility in Brooklyn.

The name "KelSo" is an amalgamation of the Brewmaster's name, Kelly Taylor, and that of his wife, Sonya Giacobbe. It was their goal to create flavorful, fresh and easy drinking beers for the people of Brooklyn and greater New York City.

Patricia Watts is founder and west coast curator of ecoartspace. She has curated over thirty art and ecology exhibitions including Shifting Baselines (2013) at Santa Fe Art Institute; MAKE:CRAFT (2010) at the Ben Maltz Gallery, Otis College of Art and Design, Los Angeles; Hybrid Fields (2006) at the Sonoma County Museum, Santa Rosa, CA; and a site-specific temporary public art installation entitled Windsock Currents (2005) on Crissy Field in the Presidio, San Francisco, for UN World Environment Day. She is currently completing the second in a series of ten ecoartspace ACTION Guides for Tattfoo Tan's S.O.S. projects. Watts was raised spending her summers on a large family farm in Missouri where she rounded up cattle on horseback, bailed hay, and helped her grandmother grow food in the garden to share with neighbors.

Linda Weintraub is a curator, educator, artist, and author of several popular books about contemporary art. She has earned her reputation by making the outposts of vanguard art accessible to broad audiences.  The current vanguard, she believes, is propelled by environmental consciousness that is not only the defining characteristic of contemporary manufacturing, architecture, science, ethics, politics, and philosophy, it is delineating contemporary art. 

“TO LIFE! Eco Art in Pursuit of a Sustainable Planet” was preceded by the series, Avant-Guardians: Textlets in Art and Ecology (2007). It includes EcoCentric Topics: Pioneering Themes for Eco-Art; Cycle-Logical Art: Recycling Matters for Eco-Art; EnvironMentalities: Twenty-two Approaches to Eco-Art. Weintraub established Artnow Publications in order to apply environmental responsibility to the books’ material production. Linda applies these environmental concerns to her personal life by managing a sustainable homestead where she practices permaculture. 

Weintraub is also the author of In the Making: Creative Options for Contemporary Artists and Art on the Edge and Over: Searching for Art’s Meaning in Contemporary Society. She edited ANIMAL. ANIMA. ANIMUS with Marketta Sepalla; served as the director of the Edith C. Blum Art Institute located on the Bard College campus where she originated fifty exhibitions and published over twenty catalogues; and held the position of Henry Luce Professor of Emerging Arts at Oberlin College.

Dear Mother Nature at the Dorsky Museum, SUNY New Paltz is the most recent exhibition she curated. Other exhibitions include Lo and Behold: Visionary Art in the Post-Modern Era, Process and Product: The Making of Eight Contemporary Masterworks, Landmarks: New Site Proposals by Twenty Pioneers of Environmental Art, Art What Thou Eat: Images of Food in American Art, and The Maximal Implications of the Minimal Line.