More than 700 people attended this year’s Women of the Vine & Spirits Global Symposium in Napa, a record number for the event’s fifth anniversary.
Women of the Vine & Spirits was founded by recent Wine Star Award Social Visionary winner Deborah Brenner. The symposium seeks to inspire, educate and connect women and men in the alcohol beverage industry to conquer gender stereotypes.
To this aim, the three-day gathering is packed with keynote speakers, panel discussions and networking opportunities.
Sessions on networking skills, communicating and finding one’s voice were well-received and attended, as were discussions on navigating career paths.
McKinsey & Company presented statistics from a Women in the Workplace 2018 study. The study underlined the business imperative for gender diversity by showing the lack of representation for women and people of color at the corporate suite level of most organizations.
Dr. Mary Kelly, a best-selling author, economist and retired Navy commander, gave a rousing keynote speech on How to Attract, Recruit, Mentor, Evolve and Develop (ARMED) the next generation of leaders.
Dr. Kelly’s most shocking statistic? That by 2020 the workforce will be 50% millennials. She challenged the audience to consider whether it was ready to attract and retain this incoming cohort of talent.
A general session on the Power of the Male Ally was moderated by Wine Enthusiast Chairman/Editor and Publisher Adam Strum. He provoked panelists from Wine Warehouse, Wolfgang Puck Worldwide, E & J Gallo Winery and Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits on what their organizations were doing to engage men and advance women.
Wine Enthusiast Executive Editor Susan Kostrzewa sat down for a lively interview with retired race car driver-now-vintner Danica Patrick. Billed as Dream Big: Crushing Gender Barriers at High Speed, Patrick showed the tenacity that has made her a multi-talented success and said that the point of being the best human is to take limiting factors out, including gender.
Patrick launched Somnium Wine in 2009 with the purchase of land on Howell Mountain in the Napa Valley. Aaron Pott makes the wines, a Rosé and Cabernet Sauvignon.
The next symposium will take place in Napa on March 9–11, 2020. For more information, visit Women of the Vine & Spirits.