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Adam Cohen ’96

Since graduating from Santa Fe Prep, and leaving Santa Fe in June of 1996 Adam Cohen’s life has taken a circular path, bringing him back to Santa Fe last year.

Always interested in biology, science and fish, Adam earned dual Bachelor of Science Degrees in Marine Biology and Marine Fisheries from Texas A & M University. After spending a short time counting fish as a researcher on a shrimp fishing vessel, he found his way back to the classroom as a high school teacher, spending the next decade teaching mathematics, science, agriculture and other subjects at both public and private schools in Dallas, TX.

It was during that time that he discovered a passion for Aquaponics, a method of growing fish and plants together in a closed-loop symbiotic soil-free system that is good for the environment and great for the people who consume the food. By using small-scale demonstration systems as classroom tools to engage students in his subjects, he developed a new respect for farmers, good food and the possibilities of urban agriculture and alternatives to dirt farming.

He left the classroom to establish his own company, Green Phoenix Farms, with the mission of educating the public, adults and students alike, about Aquaponics. A secondary goal was to become a regional resource for the emerging Aquaponic industry. His company also designs and installs a wide variety of personal systems for individual backyard gardeners and also for commercial producers in Texas and across the region. The company, now under the direction of Adam’s father, is involved with introducing Aquaponic systems and instruction through school programs throughout Texas.

It was a quirk of fate that brought Cohen back to Santa Fe in August of 2015 to assume the reins of the innovative program at Santa Fe Community College. As Lead Faculty for the Greenhouse Management and Operations program within the School of Trades and Advanced Technology at Santa Fe Community College, Cohen teaches as well as manages a production facility that supplies fresh produce to the college’s cafeteria and culinary program. He is also responsible for the construction of a new state- of-the-art greenhouse on campus that will increase the capacity of the program more than 10-fold.

Since returning to the City Different, Adam is rediscovering what life in the Land of Enchantment is like, and rekindling his love of hiking and fishing in his spare time. His family, consisting of wife Heather, daughter Abby, and son Morgan, enjoys learning about New Mexico in general and Santa Fe in particular.