Kathleen Cooper
40 Under 40, Class of 2022

Kathleen Cooper


Costa Farms

Job Title

Research & Development Manager


  • Works with breeders to solve grower issues such as daylength requirements, pests, diseases and heat tolerance.
  • Responsible for new variety trials and evaluates over 1,500 new trial codes — from propagation to production to performance trials.
  • Named Costa Farm’s Employee of the Year for 2021.


Can’t Live Without: Kathleen loves living near the water. “Whether it be the beaches in Miami, rivers in North Carolina, or the beach in my hometown Myrtle Beach, I love spending time by the water.”

Fun Facts

A Deep-Rooted Family Tree That Knows How to Spell: Kathleen’s great-great-aunt Helen lived to be 112 years old, and she is a distant cousin of Vanna White of Wheel of Fortune.

Latest Photos see all »

GPN recognizes 40 industry professionals under the age of 40 who are helping to determine the future of the horticulture industry. These individuals are today’s movers and shakers who are already setting the pace for tomorrow.
Erica Hernandez
Emma Lookabaugh
Melissa Maguire
Cole Mangum
Oz Marshall
Meagan Nace
Tiffany Nohl
Chris Plane
Mike Prol