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Women for WineSense Winemaking & Viticulture Roundtable will Present March 6 Fourth Annual GM Leadership Panel at Rutherford Hill


RUTHERFORD, CALIFORNIA | MARCH 5, 2019:  The Napa | Sonoma chapter of Women for WineSense’s (WWS) Winemakers’ & Viticultural Roundtable will hold its fourth annual General Manager Leadership Panel Wednesday, March 6, 2019, from 3:00 p.m. to 5:30 pm at Rutherford Hill Winery, located at 200 Rutherford Hill Road, Rutherford, CA 94573.

The Roundtable will be generously hosted by winemaker, Marisa Taylor, a GM Leadership panel alumna, moderator and fellow WWS program Committee member.

ABOUT THE EVENTEarly arrivals will meet at 3:00 p.m. in the barrel room to enjoy time for mingling and catching up with peers while sampling Estate wines. At 3:30 p.m. Ms. Taylor will lead a behind-the-scenes production tour of the cellar and impressive caves.

At 4:00 p.m. the group will enjoy more wine tasting while the main event commences in the cave grotto.  The Roundtable’s focus will be leadership development, aimed to help attendees at all levels in their own career through an interactive, candid panel discussion featuring three dynamic women that have worked from entry level production/viticulture and hands-on roles up to GM, Director, and President, building noted brands, high performance teams and success skills along the way.

The 2019 panelists include Lise Asimont, Director of Viticulture for Cakebread Cellars, Susan Sueiro, President of Artesa Estates and Winery, and Pauline Lhote, Director of Winemaking for Chandon.

Attendees are strongly encouraged to bring a bottle of their wine as thanks to the Roundtable hosts. Carpools from Napa and Sonoma are available.

Panel moderators will be noted GM winemaker panelists from prior years, Ms. Taylor and Janet Myers.

Roundtable chair Julie Lumgair noted, “This is an exceptional opportunity for attendees to converse directly in the mingle and program times with talented peers and five  notable industry leaders that have walked the walk and excelled in our functional tracks.  Each will openly share leadership lessons, answer candid questions and much more in a very friendly, relaxed environment.”

RSVP DETAILS:  Please, no walk-ins.  The free roundtable meeting is open to WWS Winemaking and Viticulture Roundtable members and interested women winemakers and viticulturists that have emailed and received RSVP guest confirmations through the Roundtable Chair.  

To RSVP, or for any questions on this event or future WWS Winemaking Roundtable events, please contact the chair, Julie@Lumgair.com.

ABOUT THE SPEAKERS:   Lise Asimont was named Director of Vineyard Operations for Cakebread Cellars in 2019. after many successes increasing wine quality through sustainable vineyard practices and team leadership in California with additional experiences in Oregon, France, Germany, Italy and Spain.  Over the past twenty  years some of her experiences include chairing the Unified Wine and Grape Symposium Managing LLC, and previously serving as CEO at VinSense, Director of Grower Relations and Viticulture at the Francis Coppola Winery and president for the American Society for Enology and Viticulture.

In 2015, Susan Sueiro joined the Codorniu-Raventos family as General Manager of Artesa Vineyards and Winery, and was promoted to President in 2016. She leads an inspired global team on the ambitious project to renovate the 25-year-old vineyards and winery to create wines and experiences that are a unique blend of their Napa Valley roots and Spanish heritage.  She has over twenty years experience in managing and promoting family-owned wine estates.  She started off ‘moonlighting’ as a home winemaker and harvest intern, rising through the ranks at Kendall-Jackson Wine Estates’ to become Director of Marketing Communications, followed by eleven years working on a major renewal of the historic Sonoma estate and brand for Gundlach Bundschu Winery, serving most recently as Vice President before joining Artesa.

Pauline Lahote, Director of Winemaking since early 2017 at Chandon, grew up in Champagne in a farming family and has used the last fifteen years to hone her craft of sparkling winemaking her ability to set styles and lead teams.   She began at Moët & Chandon, then Nicolas Feuillatte in Epernay, France, Domaine Chandon Australia, moving to Domaine Chandon, California, working with many inspiring mentors along her journey to head winemaker.  She was recently named to the “Create & Cultivate 100 2019” list, honoring her contribution and inspiration to women in the food industry (a category that includes wine). The organization’s list is comprised of ten women each in ten categories for a total of 100 leaders who are “redefining the future of the workplace and the world.”


Nestled high in the Eastern Hills, Rutherford Hill Winery commands a spectacular view overlooking the Rutherford bench of Napa Valley. It is from a handful of the most select Napa vineyards that Rutherford Hill continues its tradition of crafting legendary wines.  In 1972, while the rest of the world was just beginning to take notice of Napa Valley, the founders of Rutherford Hill recognized a  unique opportunity. They believed that the climate and soil of the valley, similar to Pomerol, were well suited to Merlot and were among the first to pioneer what has become Napa’s premier varietal. Today, this tradition of quality continues, expressed by wines of great complexity and character.

ABOUT THE WINEMAKING & VITICULTURAL ROUNDTABLE:  This Roundtable meets approximately six times a year, taking a harvest break Roundtable Chair, Ms. Lumgair noted, “Our past meeting topics have focused upon the C-suite professional skills and insights women winemakers and viticultural professionals need but aren’t always easy to get in their daily work environment.”

She further explained that, “Held at some of Napa and Sonoma’s finest host wineries, these programs have been a fantastic opportunity for women winemakers  and viticulturists to connect directly, in a friendly professional forum, with experts that they otherwise wouldn’t get to meet for personal advice and questions.  Some of our recent speakers have included leading wine publication critics and senior editors, global sensory consultants, sommeliers, media trainers, CFO’s and GM’s in panel discussions and key recruiters.”

Professionally qualified winemaker and viticulture guests may attend up to two Roundtables before deciding to join.  It is a great way to expand skills while reconnecting and meeting new industry professionals.

ABOUT ADDITIONAL WWS ROUNDTABLES:  WWS’ eight current professional roundtables serve to provide a welcoming and confidential environment to meet in small peer groups on a bi-monthly or quarterly basis. Members network, provide advice and support for one another, as well as foster educational occasions by inviting guest speakers in their fields and discussing ‘hot issues’ facing members in their day-to-day work. Multiple Roundtables have developed for WWS industry members in finance, accounting, human resources, winemaking/viticulture and marketing/direct-to-consumer fields.

The Napa/Sonoma Chapter currently has more than 400 members of which 80% are wine industry professionals. To join or learn more about WWS’ roundtables, please visit www.womenforwinesense.org. For inquiries about other WWS roundtables for additional functions besides winemaking and viticulture, contact the Napa| Sonoma Chapter’s President, Maryam Ahmed

ABOUT WOMEN FOR WINESENSE:  WWS is a not-for-profit organization 501(c)6.   The Napa| Sonoma Chapter founded in 1990 is the founding chapter of this national organization which provides outstanding educational and networking opportunities to both wine industry professionals and wine enthusiasts by presenting educational, insightful and stimulating events in a welcoming, fun environment.  Both men and women of legal drinking age are welcome to join.  There is an exciting line-up of events planned for 2019.  To join or learn more, please visit www.womenforwinesense.org. 



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