Paul Zwarts

Paul A. Zwarts (aka Paz)

Location:Ontario, CA


My name is Paul Zwarts. I was born in a small rural township near Montreal. Canada, but moved to Toronto with my brother at 8. I am a jack of all trades, but if you take Malcolm Gladwell's pointer on gaining mastery at 10,000 hours, I am a master of many, and not none. My professional career of beyond 25 years has been in digital technologies, with a specialty in large content management systems, particularly in the travel and tourism sectors. I have worked on behalf of many large global airline brands and designed content/review systems for the leisure travel markets.  I have had the privilege of managing hundreds of individuals and commanding millions of dollars in budgets. 


For most of my life, I have been made to feel bad about not having a specialty, as I have never finished school. Instead, I opted to be in the workforce, having jobs across varying industries such as manufacturing, aerospace, and financial tech, using each opportunity as a literally step up the stairwell of opportunity. Over the years I have worked towards management roles in technology being able to program languages but preferring to lead teams over doing it myself. Having an exposure to so many different industries I began to embrace my true specialty as being a generalist. With well above intermediate skills in a wide range of industries and roles, I have keen insight into problem-solving and seeing an opportunity (or misfortune) in places that I would not have as any kind of specialist.

However, the years of toil behind a computer began to take their toll on my physically, mentally, and emotionally as the technology startup industry is a tough environment to stay in for long periods of time.

Having traveled and lived on many continents, I have had the pleasure of being exposed to a wide range of cultures, traditions, languages, and most importantly for me, food. I consider myself a foodie and a decent cook, integrating the cultures and flavors that I encounter. Thus, I began to revisit lofty goals as a teenager about owning a restaurant, bar, or some kind of food, beverage, or entertainment outlet. Following the food first and foremost, I started on a journey in the 2010s to go back to my rural roots and start gardening for higher-quality food. During this journey, I encountered so much (what I see as) mythology online and in books that it hurt my head. Nothing seemed to meet up or make a lot of sense. During my strategy contracting years for airlines, I did a great amount of reading from journals of travel research. I went back to the scientific literature and started reading about figures like Rudolf Steiner, William Albrecht, Philip Callahan, and many others. It became clear that the mythos of gardening, farming, and agriculture for a large part ignores scientific research and follows simple observation. If it works for you, it must be true. But being a generalist, my insight for understanding that things often are not visible to the naked eye, I delved further.

If there is one thing I have learned and one skill I have employed the most in my working life, it is knowing that when you set out to solve a problem, you must first assess if you have even identified the correct problem to start with. I would tell my clients; "If my staff and I (at the agency) cannot hear your brief, and then ask you several questions you didn't think of yourself, we aren't doing our job. ". This worked well for me, so I then employed it for gardening. That led me to figures like John Kempf, Dan Kittredge, David Montgomery, and Elaine Ingham, who are the current generation's figures of agricultural magic.

Having learned that Elaine had coined the term "Soil Food Web", and had started an online school, I immediately enrolled in 2017 being one of the first waves of students. I currently am working on the thesis portion of the consulting certification of the course, having passed the foundation several years ago. With this schooling and a penchant for digging and reading research across a broader spectrum, I have found a path where the mythos can quite easily be thrown out for what it is. The knowledge of specific cycles on earth such as water, carbon, and nitrogen (among others) makes it quite clear what we humans currently understand and what we don't. After all, it was Socrates that has said "I am the wisest man alive, for I know one thing, and that is that I know nothing".

So today, I am highly engaged to become a consultant in regenerative agriculture and environmentalism. I will use my scientific knowledge, and my generalist approach to quickly learn and solve difficult problems. They will be pitted towards a new goal to see the world's food security, environment, and human benefit become chemical-free by helping others step away from the current systems of "high intervention" and return much of the control to mother nature. I also inch towards my dream of an F&B outlet with a goal of creating a farm-to-table AirBnb at my country property which not only provides food from a local organic and self-sufficient system, but also provides an education piece about the environment, the food system, and regenerative agriculture that aims to change the world, one viewpoint at a time. Because my firm belief is that corporations and governments don't change the world, the consumer changes their behavior, and the rest follows.


Technology & Research85%
Hands On95%
Team Management90%

Paul has work experience in content management, manufacturing, travel, and tourism, and seeking experience in regenerative agriculture. Having spent 2016 onwards post-close of a successful technology startup acquisition, Paul is focusing on regenerative agriculture research and consulting.

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DJ Paz