On Friday, Feb. 15, more than 125 members and supporters of the Monterey County Vintners and Growers Association (MCVGA) attended the Annual Member Luncheon to provide input and gather understanding of the organization’s new direction.
Following the announcement of strategic changes in January, the MCVGA has been working with Solterra Strategies to gain a comprehensive understanding of member priorities and develop an approach to support these needs moving forward. “One of the top priorities of the board, driving the new direction, is member engagement,” said Stacie Jacob of Solterra Strategies and MCVGA interim executive director. She continued, “a survey was sent to assess benefits and opportunities related to the organization. With a response rate of over 40 percent, we are excited to incorporate what was conveyed, into the plan to continue forward.”
Goals of the MCVGA are to focus locally and create strategic alliances. This overarching approach is driven by recognized opportunities to build partnerships with sister wine organizations, work with local hospitality and tourism groups to support a unified Brand Monterey, strengthen Monterey County wines’ market share in local restaurants and retail outlets, and to engage member participation. Based on these targets and the input received, a five-point mission has been identified to guide the restructuring process.
The MCVGA is working to improve the profitability of its members and the reputation of Monterey Wine Country–
1) by creatively managing and promoting Monterey Wine Country
2) by encouraging wine enthusiasts to visit and purchase wines from member tasting rooms
3) by increasing market share and driving sales of member wines on local wine lists
4) by advancing best practices specific to Monterey County vintners and growers
5) through strong, unified advocacy of sound public policies, research and education.
The response at the Annual Luncheon and the subsequent board meeting was very positive. “Transition is always challenging,” said board president of the MCVGA, Paul Johnson, “but we see this as an opportunity to optimize and streamline our efforts. It has been gratifying to watch our members embrace the mission and goals of this association with such gusto.”
Continuing to move forward, the MCVGA is now in the process of aligning the organization and creating the job description for a new executive director that will allow successful achievement of these goals. The association’s progress continues under the guidance the 2013 Board of Directors, supported by staff. The 2013 board of directors and officers were also announced at the meeting:
· Paul Johnson, Johnson Vineyard Co. – President
· Erik Martella, Constellation Wines, US – Vice President
· Steve Pessagno, Pessagno Winery – Secretary
· Chris Steinbruner, Member At Large – Treasurer
· Jason Smith, Paraiso Vineyards – Grape Grower Chair
· Jeff Pomo, Constellation Wines, US – Co-Grape Grower Chair
· Jennifer Smith, Paraiso Vineyards – Marketing Committee Chair
· Joyce Yates, Lockwood Oaks Vineyard – Event Chair
· Cheryl Indelicato, Delicato / San Bernabe – Past President
· Scott Caraccoli, Caraccoli Cellars
· Robert Cook, Chalone Vineyards
· Andy Mitchell, Hahn Winery
· Cindy Paup, J. Lohr Vineyards & Wines
· Sabrine Rodems, Wrath Wines
· Matthew Shea, Bernardus Winery
· Martha Tognetti, Jackson Family Wines
About the Monterey County Vintners and Growers Association
Bringing together the talents and resources of its members, partners and the community, the MCVGA promotes and supports their leadership in the art, science and business of wine. Founded in 1974, the Association is a non-profit organization representing over 65 vintners and growers in Monterey, California. Additional details are available by visiting www.MontereyWines.org or by calling 831-375-9400.