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Babette Donaldson

Home » Babette Donaldson
ITSS Member Value: Discounted speaker fees to ITSS Members. Two-for-one Emma Lea Books with member orders.
Member Since:: 2015
California, USA 95959

Babette Donaldson, founder of the International Tea Sippers Society, author of The Everything Healthy Tea Book and The Emma Lea Books and a tea educator, began her adventure with "real" tea as a graduate art student in San Francisco during the 70's with a graduate focus on ceramic art. Studying the history and elegance of ancient teaware inspired curiosity for the beverage and worldwide cultures that celebrate it ceremonially. When artisan teas became more available during the '90s, Donaldson found opportunities to study, teach, write and share her fascination with the leaf.

In addition to personal appearances promoting her books, she teaches introductory tea classes both privately and at community colleges and is a frequent speaker at tea festivals and trade shows. But Donaldson maintains that she feels most excited by her work when she's introducing the magic of brewing whole leaves to someone for the first time or digging up a rare tidbit in the 5000 year history of the plant that reminds all of us how vast the pursuit of specialty tea can be.

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4up book covers


Published Books & Booklets:

  • The Emma Lea Books
  • The Everything Healthy Tea Book
  • Fun With Tea
  • Family Tea Times (booklet)



Other Essays & Articles:

Seduced By The Leaf, A Tea Reader; Living Life One Cup At A Time. An anthology of readings for tea lovers old and new. Tuttle Publishing, 2011.

Teatime With Children, The Soul & Spirit of Tea; 21 Tea-Inspired Essays For The Early Twenty-First Century. Talking Leaves Press, 2013.

World Tea News: Interviews with Roy Fong, Amy Lawrence, Dan Robertson, David & Eunice Bigelow, Michael Spillane, Bill Hall, Devan Shah & Leslie Zhang.


Video Series:

Month of Tea 2015 - 31 Teas Brewed 31 Ways: In preparation for the launch of the International Tea Sippers Society, Babette celebrated Hot Tea Month with a short video for each day. These are now part of the Tea Sipper Library. View the Gallery Page for the entire series.

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Speaker Topics

  • The Basics of Tea:  A 2-hour introduction and tasting to the main tea categories. (5 teas)
  • The World of Tea: A 2-hour tour of the tea producing with tasting of their most noted teas. (5 teas from 5 different countries)
  • Brewing Basics: A 90 minute presentation and tasting based on "Month of Tea 2015".
  • Family Tea Times: A 30-minute discussion of how tea traditions can add fun and meaning to family life.
  • Tea With Children: A 1-2 hour interactive program with tea and activities.
  • Family Tea Times Workshop: A 2-hour interactive presentation with tea service and activities.
  • Fundraising With Tea: A 90-minute presentation for non-profit groups.
  • Legends and Lore of Tea: A 1-hour presentation of tea
  • Tea Marketing (B2B): 90-minute presentations based on educational programs developed for World Tea Expo.
  • What's Healthy About Tea?: A 45-minute presentation created for the Northwest Tea Festival educational program.


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