Jim Affolter is Director of Research at the State Botanical Garden of Georgia and a Professor in the Department of Horticulture. His research interests include plant conservation, and medicinal and aromatic plants. In addition to working with medicinal species native to the southeastern United States, he maintains a long-term collaboration with researchers in Cordoba, Argentina to promote sustainable harvest and production of herbs endangered by over-collection for commercial use. He has also played a central role in developing the new San Luis Botanical Garden at UGA's campus in the Monteverde region of Costa Rica.
He is founding chairperson of the Georgia Plant Conservation Alliance, a statewide organization formed in 1995 to coordinate rare plant research and education efforts among several government and nonprofit organizations in the state. Jim teaches two courses at the University of Georgia: Herbs, Spices, and Medicinal Plants (HORT 3440) and Issues and Advances in Medicinal Plant Use (HORT 4070/6070).