Changes Announced at Anderson Valley Winegrowers Association
Boonville, Calif.— The Anderson Valley Winegrowers Association (AVWA) is pleased to announce the appointment of Courtney DeGraff as new Executive Director. DeGraff will lead the 62-winery organization, spearheading strategic initiatives, trade partnerships and consumer-oriented events.
Previously a Sales and Marketing Manager at Foursight Winery, DeGraff has worked closely with the AVWA for the past year. Before moving from Boston to Anderson Valley and joining the wine industry, she worked for 14 years in the financial services industry, in both product development and strategic project management. Kristy Charles, current President of the AVWA board, said of DeGraff’s appointment, “We look forward to having someone with Courtney’s background leading the organization. Her experience and enthusiasm for Anderson Valley will help foster strong relationships, in and outside of the Valley.” In addition to her accomplished business background and a Master of Science in Communication Management, DeGraff also took advanced coursework in wine business and is a Certified Specialist of Wine.
While expanding trade relations outside of the Valley, DeGraff will also lead the organization in revolutionizing its two main consumer events. The Winter White Wine Festival, previously called the International Alsace Varietals Festival, will invoke the spirit of a European winter market. Held February 22-23, the festival hosts Anderson Valley’s best white wine producers in addition to several guest producers. To pay respect to the Alsatian grape varieties of the valley, this year the event will showcase Riesling.
Each of the guest producers will exclusively pour Riesling, with the special varietal changing from year to year. In addition to the guest producers, a technical seminar will focus on “Why Riesling?” In May, the AVWA will also upgrade its Pinot Noir Festival. This year’s event will be held at Scharffenberger Cellars with a VIP lounge featuring exclusive sparkling wine from Anderson Valley and Champagne.
About Anderson Valley Winegrowers Association
The Anderson Valley Winegrowers Association (AVWA) was founded in 1983 – the same year as the appellation. Made up of 22 vineyard, 62 winery and 38 associate members, the non-profit organization operates with the goal of supporting the region’s premier grape growers and wineries, as well as promoting the region’s distinguished wines. In addition to acting as a resource for its members, the association aims to better its community by donating funds every year to local nonprofit organizations. For more information about the association, or for a list of association members, please visit www.avwines.com.