Lemon Tree Trust Welcomes Tatiana Blatnik to Head of Business Development

DALLAS/DOHUK/ATHENS/LONDON (November 2018), The Lemon Tree Trust is thrilled to welcome Tatiana Blatnik to head partnerships and business development. As Vice President of Business Development, Tatiana will play an integral role in making Lemon Tree Trust’s vision possible: to expose every refugee community in the world to gardens and agriculture. Through this simple act, Lemon Tree aims to help restore a sense of purpose, belonging and dignity to those who have been forcibly displaced. 

Tatiana recently visited Domiz Refugee Camp in Iraq where she met with the team on the ground. “I saw first hand the power of gardening as a therapeutic tool, as a source of new enterprise ideas, and as a means to bring people together when they have been pulled apart.” 

One garden at a time, Lemon Tree Trust hopes to replicate its model for greening refugee communites, which started by running garden competitions across families living in refugee camps. A hybrid of philanthropic and social business objectives, all of Lemon Tree Trust’s activities impart financial and environmental sustainability to refugee communities. “I am honoured to work with such an amazing team driven by passion and purpose, who have created a model, which through its simplicity – growing gardens – helps to address mental health, and provide community, opportunity and cultural identity to those affected by forced migration” Tatiana added, “I cannot wait to begin working together with our partners towards implementing the Lemon Tree Trust’s vision”. 

Tatiana is greeted with enthusiasm by Lemon Tree Trust, not only for her commitment to a shared ethos, but also for the impressive career and talents she brings with her. Tatiana has an entrepreneurial streak targeted at helping others, having recently co-authored  “A Taste of Greece” a cookbook in support of a local community organization.  She has formidable strategic partnerships acumen, notably holding the role of trusted consultant to Diane von Furstenberg’s fashion house. Tatiana also has an active history of helping migrant communities and supporting a variety of local causes in her adopted home, Greece.  She is the perfect addition to a leadership team brought together under Stephanie Hunt’s leadership and vision. 

“Ten years ago, our Founder and Executive Chair, Stephanie Hunt, called saying she was on her way to plant seeds in a refugee camp in a war zone,” explains Alfonso Montiel, CEO of Lemon Tree Trust. “My response was, ‘You are a mother of triplets, why take this risk?’. What came next is a simple but impactful movement, and the motivation to spread it more widley has pulled me and others like Tatiana into Lemon Tree Trust.” Hunt went on to dedicate the past decade of her career in pursuit of community greening models which allow market economies to thrive in refugee communities, all created with the overarching ethos that human dignity is paramount. During this time, she collaborated with Oxford University, UNHCR, and Ikea Foundation, among others. Montiel brought Blatnik into the newly formed team following his appointment to CEO earlier in the year, and says “Tatiana has that same driving force Stephanie has, she also has the instinct, the passion, and the experience to hit the ground running in our area of work, one that is quickly becoming the most pressing humanitarian crisis in history.” 

Tatiana was born in Caracas, Venezuela. After graduating from Aiglon College in Switzerland, she received her BA in Sociology from Georgetown University (2003). She has lived and worked in New York, London, Washington D.C. and currently resides in Athens, Greece, with her husband, HRH Prince Nikolaos of Greece.


For further information about the Lemon Tree Trust, please contact Clare Johnson or Jennie Spears of Bloom PR & Communications.

Clare Johnson | +44 (0)7815 041635 |

Jennie Spears | +44 (0)7944 552634 |

 About the Lemon Tree Trust

Lemon Tree Trust pilots agricultural businesses and garden initiatives in refugee communities to restore cultural identity, dignity and purpose. Its long-term vision is to expose every refugee camp in the world to garden competitions, communal gardens, and self-sustaining, value-creating ventures run by and for refugees, providing true economic value to entrepreneurial ideas. Gardening is a powerful therapeutic tool, addressing issues of isolation and mental health, producing beauty, belonging, food security, and promising economic stimulation. Through the provision of seeds and plants, Lemon Tree Trust empowers social and economic change. |

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