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Heidi Kuhn

Founder and CEO, Roots of Peace

Skoll Awardee


The California spirit is deeply rooted in Heidi Kuhn, as her pioneer family from the 1850's taught her respect for the land and its people. The stewardship of the Earth is violated when landmines are planted, and the land is held hostage for future generations. Inspired by the peace movement on her campus at U.C. Berkeley during the 1970's, she majored in Political Economics and set forth her footsteps for peace. Bridging borders from Alaska, Heidi was a CNN producer/reporter on the melting of the 'ice curtain' between US/Soviet Relations. In the midst of her career in journalism, while raising three children, Heidi was diagnosed with cancer. In 1997, she realized that 'Cancer was a landmine, and landmines were a cancer to the Earth,' and made a prophetic toast that the world may go from 'MINES TO VINES'--replacing the scourge of landmines with bountiful vineyards and orchards worldwide. From the basement of her family home, she reached out to Napa Valley vintners to support her vision, which grew to the United Nations, World Bank, and international governments and leaders. For the past two decades, with support from her family, Heidi has truly planted the Roots of Peace on Earth.
Heidi was been awarded the Gubernatorial Appointment to the California Council of the Humanities - 1996; the Cal Berkeley Alumni Award for Excellence and Achievement – 2002; the Marin Women’s Hall of Fame Award - 2003; theWorld Association of Non-Governmental Organization (WANGO) Award for Peace & Security - 2005; the United Nations World Environment Day “Walk the Talk” Award - 2005; The Rotary International “Service Above Self” Award - 2005; The Skoll Award on Social Entrepreneurship - 2006; The Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis Award/National Jefferson Award for Public Service – 2007; The Spirit of Marin Award - 2013. She has also was invited in 2016 to be an speaker at the World Summit of Nobel Peace Laureates.