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Nominated categories include Wine Region of the Year and Wine Executive of the Year

SANTA ROSA, CA, September 5, 2019 – Following Sonoma County’s continued success and record-setting ways in the wine industry, the region has been named a finalist for the 2019 Wine Star Awards for Wine Region of the Year. Dry Creek Vineyard President Kim Stare Wallace is also nominated in the category of Wine Executive of the Year.

Sonoma County’s nomination for Wine Region of the Year embodies the noteworthy contributions the area has made to the industry and community by adopting and implementing innovative, welcoming and sustainable programs including the area’s pledge to become the first 100 percent certified sustainable winegrowing region by the end of the year. As Sonoma County has become the global leader for sustainable winegrowing, the region has established the Sonoma County Center for Ag Sustainability to enable winegrowers to identify and focus on the most challenging problems facing the local wine community to ensure preservation of agriculture and continued advancement in strengthening and building the region’s sustainability efforts.

Sustainability is also important to the hospitality and lodging industry, which includes becoming destination stewards. The region is partnering with Kind Traveler, the first socially conscious “give and get” hotel booking and education platform, that gives travelers an opportunity to give $10 a night to a local charity. The donation unlocks exclusive rates and perks from a list of “Kind Hotels.”

Travelers are also asked to make a positive impact to the health and well-being of Sonoma County’s thriving local communities, abundant experiences and breathtaking natural landscapes by signing a pledge to travel lightly. The region has an ambitious goal of encouraging 1 million travelers to take the pledge found on www.sonomacounty.com.

To continue raising awareness of Sonoma County as one of the world’s premier wine regions, Sonoma County Vintners has hosted and promoted many wine-focused events including the Sonoma County Wine Auction, a leading charitable wine auction which brings wine superstars and exceptional chefs together to invest in the community. The event has raised over $30 million to help fund over 60 charitable organizations focusing on education, health and human services, the environment, and arts and culture. In addition, their annual Taste of Sonoma event, which spotlights Sonoma County’s renowned vintners and chefs allows wine enthusiasts from all over the world an opportunity to taste the bounty of Sonoma County.

Nominee Kim Stare Wallace was literally raised among the vines in Sonoma County’s Dry Creek Valley and has spent over three decades working throughout various roles in the family business, serving as President since 2011. Stare Wallace’s nomination is a testament to her dedication as a second-generation leader of her family winery, but also to her passion for championing Dry Creek Valley as a world-class wine growing appellation. The momentous occasion marks the first time that the family-owned and sustainably farmed winery has been nominated for the prestigious Wine Star Awards.

Each year, editors of Wine Enthusiast honor the individuals and companies that have made outstanding achievements in the wine and beverage world. Today, The Wine Star awards distinguish how multifaceted and rich the beverage culture has become and continues to embrace and acknowledge the trailblazers who are impacting what people put in their glass every day.

Winners will be announced on winemag.com on Thursday, October 31, 2019 and appear in the special December 31 “Best of Year” issue. Honorees will be presented their Wine Star Award trophies at the 20th anniversary black-tie awards dinner on Monday, January 27, 2020 hosted in San Francisco, CA at the Palace of Fine Arts.

About Sonoma County Tourism

Just 30 miles north of San Francisco, Sonoma County is one of California’s top food and wine destinations, home to more than 425 wineries ranging from rustic to regal. Hike among towering redwoods, cruise along rugged Pacific coastline, and get to know inviting small towns. Or, just sit back and take it all in. Because here, you’re free to go your own way. Learn more at https://www.sonomacounty.com/.

About Sonoma County Winegrowers

The Sonoma County Winegrape Commission, also known as Sonoma County Winegrowers (SCW), was established in 2006 as a marketing and educational organization dedicated to the promotion and preservation of Sonoma County as one of the world’s premier grape growing regions. With more than 1,800 growers, Sonoma County Winegrower’s goal is to increase awareness and recognition of the quality and diversity of Sonoma County’s grapes and wines through dynamic marketing and educational programs targeted to wine consumers around the world. In January 2014, SCW committed to becoming the nation’s first 100% sustainable winegrowing region by 2019. As of July 2019, over 95% of the vineyard acreage in Sonoma County is certified sustainable by a third party auditor. Learn more at www.sonomawinegrape.org.

About Sonoma County Vintners

Sonoma County Vintners is the leading voice of Sonoma County wine, dedicated to raising awareness of Sonoma County as one of the world’s premier wine regions. Founded in 1944, Sonoma County Vintners represents over 200 wineries throughout the county. We actively promote Sonoma County through our educational programming; advocate for our vintners at local, state and federal levels; and contribute to our local communities through our charitable foundation, Sonoma County Vintners Foundation. Sonoma County Wine Auction, our annual fundraiser, has raised over $29 million benefiting non-profit organizations throughout the region. To learn more about Sonoma County Vintners, visit sonomawine.com.

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