NAPA (January 17, 2014) – Arthur J. Caputi, Jr., known to industry friends and colleagues as Art, has announced his retirement from the American Vineyard Foundation (AVF) where he has served as an integral member of the AVF Executive Committee and a founding board member since the foundation's establishment in 1978. A respected mentor, pioneer and advocate for the improved progression of the wine and grape industry through research, the AVF honors Art's contributions to the organization and his invaluable impact on the American wine community not only during his 35-year tenure with the AVF, but over his successful career in the industry spanning an unprecedented 63 years.
Prior to the founding of the AVF, Art's interest in chemistry blossomed within the winemaking and research laboratories of E. & J. Gallo starting as a teenager in 1950 where he worked summers until completing his education. What began as an interest quickly became a passion, leading Art toward an illustrious career at Gallo where he conducted countless seminal research projects.
Art built one of the first gas chromatographs used for wine analyses; improved methods for total acidity measurements; developed methods for metals analysis; researched electrodialysis (in the late 60's, almost 40 years before the membrane technology caught up to make it practical); developed methods for carbon dioxide measurement; pioneered the use of Clark electrodes for oxygen measurement in wine; initiated collaborative analysis studies; and worked with U.C. Davis to ascertain the factors involved in ethyl carbamate formation.
Concurrent with his tenure at Gallo, Art helped found the AVF in 1978, served as the American Society for Enology & Viticulture (ASEV) president from 1979-1980 and was an ASEV board member for 20 years, as well as chair of the ASEV Technical Projects Committee. In 2000, the ASEV honored Art's significant contributions to the Society and the wine and grape industry for 50 years with the Society's Merit Award following Art's retirement from Gallo as vice president of technical services. Over the past decade Art has remained active within the industry as an independent consultant, and has also continued to be instrumental in the growth and success of the AVF.
"On behalf of the AVF Board of Directors, we sincerely thank Art for his longtime AVF involvement and dedicated service to the industry and research community," said Scott Deitrick, administrative manager, American Vineyard Foundation. "As a founding member of the organization, the AVF was most fortunate to have Art's direction, expertise and leadership behind its development and pursuit to advance the industry through research."
Art departs the AVF with a legacy that will live on for winemaking generations to come. The AFV acknowledges Art's fortitude that has led to multiple viticultural and enological milestones over the past 60 years and will continue the progressive vision of one of its most inspiring leaders.
About the American Vineyard Foundation
The American Vineyard Foundation (AVF) is a nonprofit organization that enjoys generous voluntary industry support for research in viticulture and enology. The AVF provides a unique opportunity to unify the industry through efficient funding of basic and applied research contributing to the American grape and wine industry's position as the world's leader. For more information visit www.avf.org.