Zach studied sustainable forest management at Aprovecho Research Center (Oregon) and Aton Forest Ecological Research Station (Norfolk, CT). In 2007 he graduated with a degree in Ecology, Evolution, and Environmental Biology from Columbia University, writing a thesis on Hemlock Forests undergoing ecosystem changes from invasive insect damage.
Zach worked at Whippoorwill Farm in Salisbury, CT, helping manage a grass-fed beef heard and cutting hay. From 2008-2011 he was field manager at Stone Barns Center for Food and Agriculture, where he also conducted a forest survey and drafted a forest management proposal. He currently co-manages The Farm at the Locusts on the Hudson, growing vegetables, herbs and perennials, and raising chickens, pigs, and bees. Here he combines his knowledge of forest ecology with agroforestry and silvopasturing practices, to create a whole farm system that utilizes the synergies between fields, forests and pastures.