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Golden Gate Salmon Association Sells Out Inaugural Sonoma Dinner

Vintner and Family Patriarch Sam Sebastiani Feted
by Press Release
March 20, 2014
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Mike Benziger, Sam Sebastiani, Benziger Winemaker Jeff McBride and Sonoma Raceway President Steve Page

SONOMA, CA (March 18, 2014) – The Golden Gate Salmon Association (GGSA)( hosted their inaugural Sonoma Valley Dinner on Friday, March 14 at Ramekins CulinarySchool, Events & Inn. Winemaking legend Sam Sebastiani attended as the special guest of honor, bringing along his new wine La Chertosa, which won rave reviews from the crowd. Sam was honored for all of his years of water stewardship. 

“What an incredible and fun evening. It was great to raise some money and awareness for the salmon issues facing California and visit with neighbors and old friends, “enthused Sebastiani.

Sebastiani called for immediate CPR for the salmon industry; conservation, preservation and restoration.

The dinner was attended by the who’s who of Sonoma including the Sebastiani’s, Cuneo’s, Benziger’s, Coturri’s, Haraszthy’s, Robert Kamen, Darius and Sarah Anderson and the Cohn’s. Additional guests included Congressman Mike Thompson, Sonoma Mayor Tom Rouse, Louann Carlomagno the Superintendent of the SonomaValleyUnifiedSchool District and Jacky Douglas, the 80 something famed-skipper of the Wacky Jacky charter. Also in attendance were long-time Sonomans Ron Lennon, Bill and Dottie Lynch (former owner of the local Sonoma Index Tribune and a fishing enthusiast) Dr. Rolf Olness, Sonoma Raceways Steve Page, Sonoma Index Tribune editor David Bolling, Wine editor Cyril Penn and wife Gigi and Sonoma City Councilman Ken Brown and wife Jewel. Scientist Joe Merz, Ph.D addressed the room with a special salmon presentation.

“This is a tough year for salmon with a drought thrown in. Getting the word out to this group will go a long way in generating support and rebuilding these historic salmon runs, “ exclaimed John McManus, executive director of GGSA. “I know I speak for the entire GGSA leadership when I thank all the folks who helped put this together.”

The next GGSA fundraising dinner is scheduled for Santa Rosa on April 4. Tickets at

Currently, California’s salmon industry is valued at $1.4 billion in economic activity annually and about half that much in economic activity again in Oregon. The industry employs tens of thousands of people from Santa Barbara to northern Oregon. This is a huge economic bloc made up of commercial fishing men and women, recreational anglers (fresh and salt water), fish processors, marinas, coastal communities, fishing guides, equipment manufacturers, the hotel and food industry, tribes, and the salmon fishing industry at large.

The Golden Gate Salmon Association ( is a coalition of salmon advocates that includes commercial and recreational salmon fishermen, a Native American tribe, businesses, restaurants, fishing guides, environmentalists, families and communities that rely on salmon. GGSA’s mission is to protect and restore California’s largest salmon producing habitat comprised of the Central Valley rivers that feed the Bay-Delta ecosystem and the communities that rely on salmon.

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