Herbalist and educator Sara Katz received the Mark Blumenthal Herbal Community Builder Award, granted to persons in the herbal medicine community who have played a significant role in creating a sense of community among herbalists, researchers, members of the herb and natural products communities, and related groups who work in the area of medicinal plants.
Among her many noteworthy accomplishments, Katz is co-founder of the herbal products company Herb Pharm, a founding member of the American Herbalists Guild, and board president of United Plant Savers (UpS), a nonprofit organization dedicated to conservation and sustainable production of indigenous American medicinal plants.
She has served on numerous local and national boards — including that of the American Herbal Products Association — and she has organized and co-organized multiple herbal conferences throughout the United States, notably five UpS conferences at Herb Pharm between 2000 and 2012, with proceeds benefiting the conservation nonprofit.
“I am so humbled, floored, and surprised. To be in the same teacup as Mark and Rosemary [Gladstar, inaugural winner of the award in 2013] – I cannot imagine a more meaningful award…. I couldn’t be happier and I am over-the-moon honored,” said Katz. “The herbal community is international, ranging from scientists to herbalists to farmers. There is a spirit and a spark and an understanding that unites all of us, and that’s a lot of people.”
“Herbs lead the way,” she continued. “For me, it’s a spiritual path; it’s what connects me to the unknown and the world of nature, and I think it’s that way for many of us. When you get that spark of the medicine plants, it’s forever.”
Blumenthal noted: “Sara is a truly amazing person, perhaps a proverbial ‘force of nature’. I remember, back in the late 1970s or early 1980s, her working in her home late at night, packing orders for the line of ‘home-made’ herbal extracts that she and Ed made, sending them to herbalists and alternative healthcare practitioners all over the United States. She was like three people in one — her energy and enthusiasm seemed boundless. And, she’s taken that high level of energetic commitment beyond the business to educational activities and organizations across the United States, particularly with her dedicated volunteer work as president of United Plant Savers.”