NAPA, June 30, 2020 – Wine Unify, a platform that champions diversity and inclusion for underrepresented minorities in the wine industry, launched this week. The organization was co-founded by notable wine industry figures, DLynn Proctor, Martin R. Reyes MW, Mary Margaret McCamic MW.
Armed with three initiatives – to welcome, to elevate, and to amplify underrepresented minorities – Wine Unify seeks to create more visibility and opportunity for people of color.
Wine Unify was founded on the belief that education is the cornerstone to progress in any field. Yet many ethnic and racial minorities experience significant barriers to entry – be it financial, mentorship, or a general feeling of exclusion. By fostering wine education for underrepresented minority groups, and amplifying the voices of the people of color who are already thriving within the wine industry, Wine Unify seeks to change this landscape. Outreach, access and funding for wine education are pillars within the mission. In addition, Wine Unify seeks to create an environment with inspiring, inclusive content highlighting the breadth of minority talent in the wine industry.
Wine Unify is made up of a team of industry leaders who serve as mentors, ambassadors, or advisory board members. The current roster of leaders involved includes Gary Obligacion (Post Ranch Inn), Tonya Pitts (One Market), Alicia Towns Franken (Towns Franken Consulting), Anna-Christina Cabrales (Morrell Wine Bar), Priyanka French (Signorello Estate), Lucy Anderle (Mayacamas Vineyards), Julia Coney (Black Wine Professionals), Annette Alvarez-Peters (Costco AVP, retired), Andre Mack (Maison Noir Wines), Yashodhan ‘Billo’ Naravane MW (Rasa Vineyards), and Jessica Trujillo (JONATA & The Hilt).
With the generous assistance of sponsors, including Napa Valley Wine Academy, Wine.com, Coravin, and Jancisrobinson.com, among others, Wine Unify is able to offer a variety of education-based awards for aspiring and existing minority wine professionals and help strengthen the diverse community in our industry. Details and requirements to apply for these awards can be found on the website at www.wineunify.org, along with the opportunity to donate to the cause or inquire about sponsorship.