Ashley van de Sande is a member of GPN's 2024 Class of Forty Under 40 honorees
40 Under 40, Class of 2024

Ashley van de Sande



Job Title

Strategic account manager


What three professional and/or personal accomplishments are you most proud of?

  • I used to participate in local government and served on my city council. I entered into the horticulture industry in my mid-20s, and as a female in the technical sales space, this was challenging and there were very few of us. 
  • I have continued to work hard, excel and make a name for myself and, for that, I feel very accomplished. 
  • Lastly, I am raising two beautiful boys who have taught me to slow down and make each day count. They are, for sure, my number one accomplishment.

What led you to work in the horticulture industry?

  • I kind of fell into this industry.
  • I was recently out of college and looking for a new opportunity. I saw a job opening for a ‘green-tech startup’ and that sounded pretty cool. Thirteen years later and I’m still working in the space, loving horticulture and soaking up all that I can to continue to support our growers while advocating for sustainability and efficiency.

What’s the best thing about your job? 

  • Problem solving

Describe to a 6-year-old what you do in life?

  • I sell lights to greenhouse and indoor growers.
  • I also have a lot of fun working with growers, taste testing their vegetables and traveling all over.


What are your favorite hobbies? 

  • I love to cook and bake. I’m not great, but I’m trying!

When you’re not working, what are 2-3 things we could find you doing? 

  • Chasing after my wild 3.5 year old son
  • Exploring our new neighborhood
  • Shopping for a new houseplant

Fun Facts

Do you have any unusual talents, or can you tell us something interesting about yourself that other people may be surprised to find out? 

  • My family and I recently moved from California to Ontario, Canada, to continue our passion for horticulture. Naturally, I took up the sport of curling. I wouldn’t call it a talent just yet, but I am working on it!

One thing you can’t live without? 

  • My husband. I know, cheesy, but true. We met in this industry. He’s my gut check on things and knows the space just as well, if not better than I do.

What are you (un)secretly good at? 

  • I am kicking butt at being a mom. I didn’t think I would have the patience for it, but it turns out I’m great.

What are your top three bucket list items? 

  • Travel to as many countries as I can
  • Learn to speak Dutch
  • Backpack through Mont Blanc for my 40th

What’s your favorite plant variety and why? 

  • Rex Begonias. I love the unique and different colors, textures and shapes.

You’re buying a vacation package to anywhere in the world without a budget, where are you going?

  • I would love to travel all through Southeast Asia.