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The Power of a Plant


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About the Author

Stephen Ritz teaches Pre-K through 5th grade at CS 55 in the Bronx and is the founder of the Green Bronx Machine. He was a Top 10 Finalist for the Global Teacher Prize and is one of NPR's 50 Greatest Teachers. He earned his school the Citywide Award of Excellence from NYC's Strategic Alliance for Health. Ritz has spoken at the United Nations Social Innovation Summit and the Clinton Global Initiative. His Tedx talk has had nearly 1 million views. He resides in the Bronx.


“Education should unleash human potential, which is infinite in its capacity to create, know, and solve every conceivable problem. Stephen Ritz has opened a door to this unbounded field of possibilities, which he elegantly describes in The Power of a Plant.”
—Deepak Chopra, New York Times bestselling author and author of You are the Universe

“Here’s proof positive that one person can make a difference. Stephen Ritz uses food plants—Green Bronx Machine—to transform kids and their school environments. You can do this too!”
—Marion Nestle, professor of food, nutrition, and public health at New York University, and author of What to Eat

“Building a new and effective Good Food system is everyone’s obligation, and it starts with education. Stephen’s epic story teaches us how to turn every community into a place that nourishes bodies and minds. He’s my hero.
—Will Allen, CEO of Growing Power and author of The Good Food Revolution

“Stephen Ritz is one of the most innovative, genuine, and tenacious educators I have ever met. He is the kind of superhero we need standing for our kids and their well-being. He uses gardening to inspire, challenge, and get kids growing in ways that transform their lives and communities. His story will touch your heart and propel you to plant a seed!”
—Nona Evans, president and executive director of Whole Kids Foundation

“In his new book The Power of a Plant, Stephen Ritz weaves a beautiful personal tale of how boundless passion, purpose, and hope can move generations of students in New York’s tough South Bronx to realize their untapped human potential. Stephen uses the power of kindness and purpose to not only teach kids about the world but to create a better world for all of us.”
—Daniel Lubetzky, CEO and founder of KIND Snacks

“The only thing bigger than the impact Stephen has had helping countless students understand the importance of their food choices is his infectious personality. The Power of a Plant outlines the remarkable work he has done to date and provides a blueprint for how educators around the world can implement his learnings effectively.”
—Tom Colicchio, chef and owner of Crafted Hospitality

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