Industry mourns David van Wingerden

Jan 17, 2024
Industry mourns David van Wingerden

Express Seed announced that David van Wingerden died on Jan. 15 after a 19-month battle with leukemia. In a statement, the company extended its deepest sympathies to David’s family. David was a devoted figure who brought passion, stewardship and energy in horticulture to Express Seed, its suppliers, and its customers. 

Growing up alongside his siblings in the greenhouse business founded by his father, John van Wingerden, David developed a love for the horticultural industry early on and recognized the importance of vertical integration within this industry’s global supply chain. He, along with the team at Express Seed, was a conduit for long-lasting global business relationships that will continue to connect growers in North America to best-in-class plant varieties, genetics, and production worldwide. 

David began his career in the family companies in 1997 at Green Circle Growers, eventually joining Express Seed and then becoming COO in 2006. More recently, he took on the additional role of CIO.

Top left to right: Kayley, David, Keri and Chatham. Bottom row: Kayte, Mak, T.J. and Jack.

Prior to entering the family companies, David and his wife Keri served in Debre Zeit, Ethiopia, for 16 months of life-changing work and ministry. He advised several local farms regarding the production of different vegetables, fruits, flowers and dairy products. While there he established Genesis Farms for vegetable production and helped Alema Farms, a chicken hatchery and feed company, get their start.

In his spare time, he cared for a large group of children at a local orphanage, whom he never forgot. These early experiences were integral in his growing understanding that there must be a close connection between an individual s purpose in life and his purpose in business.

David always said that one of the secrets to success is rooted within strong relationships that drive the best value from the entire supply chain. He pursued this vision relentlessly.

“The horticultural industry has suffered a great loss in David’s passing,” said Scott Valentine, CEO of Express Seed. “We will honor his memory and contributions by continuing to carry on his compelling passion, dedication and energy to serving the horticultural industry.” 

“We’ve lost a son, brother, friend, and fellow business partner. This is a sorrowful time after his courageous battle against leukemia. We will miss him dearly. We thank everyone who has supported David and his family during his 19-month battle with leukemia,” said John van Wingerden, CJ van Wingerden, and Scott Giesbrecht. 

Read David’s obituary click here.