benjamin

Benjamin Johnson

FOUNDER & DIRECTOR
 

Kia ora! Wellington has been my home for 15 years and I love everything about it. You'd be hard pressed to find another city so full of culture, excellent coffee and good vibes. There is a strong spirit of community and connectedness here - we're really just a large village! I completed Commerce & Science degrees at Victoria University before changing tact at the ripe age of 21 to start my own photography business with my beautiful wife, set up and oversee The Free Store, start another business a few years later and, well, start another another business a few years after that. My life is rich and full. It is a pleasure and honour to lead The Free Store and call all those involved friends.

 

Alexander Reid

STORE MANAGER
 

Watching plants grow is one of my greatest joys. Even as a kid, when I only had a little cactus to call my own, I loved it. I’m from Omaha, Nebraska, where I earned a degree in Agricultural Studies. I went on to work for an industrial food corporation but left because I wanted to pursue a job that aligned more with my values. I believe that gardens can bring neighbors together and foster a community’s mental and physical health.

 

Andy Hockey

Design & Web wizard
 

For a while, I worked as a PR consultant to emerging musicians and bands in Nashville. I wanted to transition into the nonprofit sector and be involved in the sustainable movement. Project Sprout is my first venture into the field, and I couldn’t be happier. I still have a strong commitment to the music industry and sometimes combine both skill sets by planning and hosting fundraising shows at our larger gardens.