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The Whole U "People of UW" Profile: Katie Sadler, UW Biology Greenhouse Manager [VIDEO]

Thursday, February 29, 2024 - 13:45

UW Biology Greenhouse Manager Katie Sadler was recently featured in a profile for the "People of UW" series hosted through The Whole U.

Excerpt and video below:

As she leads a tour of the diverse vegetation proliferating inside the UW Biology Greenhouse, Katie Sadler compulsively collects dead leaves, desiccated flowers and spent branches, almost without noticing, the way a mother casually fusses with her child’s hair or straightens his collar.

“I wish I had my pruning shears,” she says, with a knowing smile.

Since joining the UW in 2021 to manage operations of the sprawling greenhouse, Sadler is called to be both botanical mom and maestro, caring deeply for every frond and flower of the 4,500 plants on display while also orchestrating the complex ecosystem that keeps them all thriving—and serves a legion of stakeholders who study and enjoy them. She manages the facility and its small staff, oversees plant propagation and growth, curates teaching collections and supports research projects.

Apart from the feeling that “it sometimes takes two of me,” Sadler presents as an ardent advocate and generous educator of the plant world, offering an encyclopedia knowledge and a natural enthusiasm that suggests she is in precisely the right place at the right time.

“The University of Washington is a wonderful institution with a long, storied history and a large, beautiful plant collection,” she says. “It’s a pleasure to come in every day and see what’s blooming and growing. And it’s so satisfying to connect people with plants, sharing our collections with students and the public. It’s a fantastic job.”

Read the full profile on The Whole U. Congratulations on the feature, Katie!

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