With diverse and varying margins, how does a winery decide how to build and manage sales channels to maximize both profit and brand? Wholesale selling in off-premise independent versus chains, on-premise by the bottle or by the glass, direct-to-consumer channels – what path or paths should you take with your brand? Please join panelists from variously sized Oregon wineries who have all approached the topic differently and successfully. Amy Prosenjak from A to Z Wineworks will lead the discussion with Gaironn Poole of Poole & Sons Consulting, Annie Schull from Raptor Ridge Winery and Alison Sokol Blosser of Sokol Blosser Winery.
Gaironn Poole has always felt at home in the wine world, which began in Texas. Now, with 15 years of experience in the Oregon wine industry, Gaironn has worked in most all aspects of the business. She loves to examine the challenges and goals of the industry from the perspective of retail buyer, sommelier, wholesaler and winery proprietor.
Amy Prosenjak is president of A to Z Wineworks in Newberg, Oregon. She joined the company in its fifth year with the acquisition of REX HILL Vineyards (2007) and she has been instrumental in transitioning A to Z Wineworks from an 80,000 case winery to its current status as Oregon’s largest winery with production of 400,000 cases and an expanded winemaking campus. In 2014, Amy led the company’s efforts to gain certification as a B Corporation, reflecting a commitment to environmental, social and economic sustainability. Amy works with a number of organizations focused on education, outreach and cultural diversity. She serves on the board of trustees for Linfield College in McMinnville, Oregon and as treasurer on the board of directors for Literary Arts.
Annie Shull‘s background in curriculum development for sales teams has proven to be a great segue to the role of distribution sales management and PR for Raptor Ridge Winery. The bulk of her time is now spent traveling extensively throughout the U.S. representing Raptor Ridge. Annie is president emeritus of Oregon Pinot Camp, and served as a director for nine years, contributing to review and revision of curriculum. Annie also served on the iSalud! steering committee, and currently chairs the Industry/Community Collaboration subcommittee for the Willamette Valley Wineries Association.
Alison Sokol Blosser is CEO and co-president of Sokol Blosser Winery. The daughter of founders Susan Sokol Blosser and Bill Blosser, Alison leads the business with her brother, Alex, where she guides the strategic future of the business while directly overseeing marketing, sales and administrative functions, including accounting, finance and human resources. Alison carries the torch in Sokol Blosser Winery’s sustainability efforts and commitment to social responsibility, recently overseeing the achievement of the winery’s B Corp certification. She earned her MBA at the University of Washington, and in 2004, she returned to Sokol Blosser and assumed the role of director of marketing. Alison is past president of Oregon Pinot Camp, as well as a member of the Young Presidents’ Organization’s Oregon Chapter and Women for Winesense. She is a member of the marketing committee for the Oregon Wine Board, and is a founding board member of the Dundee Hills Winegrowers Association.
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