Meaghan lives in Hammondsport NY and chose to live in the FLX for many reasons. One of the biggest is because her family's business is located here. Also, her family lives here and it is where she would like to one day raise a family of her own. After living in Europe and Australia, she’s come to appreciate the area due to the warmth of the people, the natural beauty and of course the world-class wines produced here.
For two years Meaghan has been the General Manager for her family's winery, Dr. Konstantin Frank Wine Cellars. She has a Masters degree in Wine Business from the University of Adelaide in Australia and will complete a MPS in Enology from Cornell University in December 2015. She also holds the Level III WSET certificate. She is in the wine industry because it is important to her to continue what her great-grandfather started back in 1958 when he planted the first vinifera grapevines on the family property. She genuinely enjoys learning about the world of wine and looks forward to growing and improving her family's business with her father Fred.
When asked why she joined WWS, Meaghan says, “I am a new member of WWS, I joined in August 2015. I joined because I knew it would be an amazing group of women whom I would be working with and the organization had a strong education focus. I believe that this educational focus of WWS will help the Finger Lakes region become more aware of the wines made here so that we can understand how we fit in on a world scale.”
Meaghan recognizes that her interest in wine has opened many doors, including having the opportunity to work with her family every day to build upon a goal that was first started 54 years ago. She was able to travel and live in Australia for her Masters degree, which she completed in 2013. This enabled her to travel during her years there to various wine regions "down under" such as Barossa Valley, Clare Valley, McLaren Vale, Adelaide Hills, Eden Valley, Kangaroo Island, Margaret River and Central Ottago (NZ). She and her husband are planning to take their honeymoon through many of the wine regions of Spain in January. She hopes to visit as many world wine regions as possible during her lifetime and aspires to one day complete the Master of Wine program.
Meaghan is excited to be part of WWS and looks forward to learning a great deal through the many events, and she looks forward to meeting all of the chapter members!
When Katie moved to the Finger Lakes in 2011, it was for a 3 month contract with Finger Lakes Wine Country and Finger Lakes Wine Alliance and she had full intentions of moving back to Ohio as soon as that contract was up. However, after her first visit to Seneca Lake and meeting a group of wonderful Finger Lakes wine industry members, she knew immediately that she needed to stay here. The bounty of wine, other craft beverages, home-grown farm to table cuisine, and most of all, the wonderful people and sense of community is what keeps her here.
She is the Director of Marketing & PR for Wagner Vineyards and Wagner Valley Brewing Co. on the east side of Seneca Lake. It was actually her background in Journalism/PR and Spanish, yes Spanish, that got her into the industry. She developed her love and appreciation for wine while studying abroad in Spain and because of her journalism background fell into her first wine job at the Ohio Wine Producers Association in Geneva, OH. From there she learned about the Finger Lakes wine industry and made it her goal to get here and tell the world about Finger Lakes wines.
When asked why she joined WWS, Katie says, "A group of very smart and strong women in the Finger Lakes wine industry asked if I would be interested in joining the board of the Finger Lakes Chapter of Women for Winesense, an organization I knew little about. However, just having the opportunity to work closely with such inspirational women with a mission of education people about wine was enough for me to say "Absolutely," without any hesitation!"
Katie acknowledges her interest and involvement in wine brought here to the Finger Lakes, to New York and has allowed her to experience New York City in a way she never knew possible. If you asked her five years ago where she thought she'd be today, she never would have said "Traveling to the city once a month to showcase wines to some of the finest restaurants in the country." She didn't even know what fine dining was five years ago... ;) Getting involved in the wine industry taught her the important lesson that you can LOVE what you do.
Katie lives in Ithaca, NY with her fiance Dan and their fur child Leo, (who she likes to think is the official mascot of the WWS FLX Chapter), where they love to be outdoors hiking, biking, and playing in the lake as much as possible.
Sandy lives on top of Italy Hill in the FLX, between Branchport on Keuka Lake and Naples which is at the south end of Canandaiga Lake. She loves this region for the abundant nature- hiking, boating, skiing, waterfalls, birding....the list is endless. Additionally, she loves this region for the wineries and overall focus on agriculture.
As a business manager at an upstate NY wholesaler with a unique and exclusive focus supporting local suppliers, Sandy represents wineries, distilleries and cideries all located here in NYS. She loves working with real people who are close to the products they produce, and loves that the products are truly local. Previously her career was in healthcare, business-to-business, marketing communications for capital equipment purchases...with lots of layers and hierarchy between her and the people using the products; which is why she likes being closer to the consumer and involved with a more condensed trail from producer to consumer. This helps her really feel like she can apply the integrated "whole" of her past experience and skill set to this industry in a way that has a positive effect on business overall, which she loves.
When asked why she joined WWS, Sandy says, “I joined the FLX Chapter at inception, and was honored to be invited to be a board member. I have attended and presented at the Rochester WWS Chapter and have always enjoyed that group. I am thrilled to now be involved in the FLX Chapter!!”
Sandy feels that her interest and involvement in wine has provided her with a second career. After leaving the corporate world in communications and healthcare, she has been able to apply her professional skills to this wonderfully vibrant and growing segment of our NYS economy. She says it has been an exciting and fun journey...with no end in sight!
Cheryl started her career working in restaurants for 21 years, that is where she fell in love with wine. She now works for a wine distributor that represents 18 New York State properties, along with wineries from all over the world. She doe this because of her love for wine, and she loves the opportunity to share it with others. The greatest feeling she gets when working with people is seeing the “light bulb" come on, knowing they understand something new that they may not have had the background or opportunity to learn had she not shared her expertise with them.
When asked why she joined WWS, Cheryl says "I joined Women for Winesense FLX at its beginnings, and my motivation was always about the education. My vision for this chapter is to create a professional forum where both women and men can come together to learn, appreciate and love wine."
Cheryl's interest and involvement in wine has brought her to this point in her career, and she can’t imagine doing anything else. She spends most of her time exploring the FLX, as that is where her heart is. She has been to the California wine regions and her travel bucket list includes New Zealand, Spain and Italy. She is the proud mother to 5 rescue dogs, and says that their unconditional love is what keeps her balanced.
Jessi grew up in the Finger Lakes and truly believes that it is one of the most beautiful places to live in the world. She loves that it is so easy to get anywhere from here (except the West Coast), and feels it is easy to get the amenities of a city, or the openness of the country within several hours.
She is a full time Dental Office Manager for her parents' practice. While she does love her job, she admits she would love to make her career in the wine or tourism industry in this area. She does in-home wine tastings through the Traveling Vineyard and recently took the WSET Level I course. She wasted no time (didn’t even wait for the results of that exam) before signing up for the Level II in January 2016.
When asked why she joined WWS, Jessi says “I have an interest in wine from my mom and was excited to have a chance to meet some like minded people, as well as learn more about wine! I would love to see the chapter grow and become part of what the FInger Lakes Wine Country is known for.”
She’s currently engaged to a cool guy named Dave, and together they share the joy of living with the best dog in the history of the world, Gizmo.
Karen currently lives in East Rochester, NY. She originally hails from from Seneca Falls but moved with her father's job, first to Virginia and then to Fairport, NY.
Her full time job is in IT as a Quality Test Lead in the Rochester, NY area. She also works part time for a local liquor store in Pittsford, NY called Pittsford Wine and Spirits. Her first job in the local wine industry was with Casa Larga Vineyards, working there for there 14 years first in the retail store including giving tours and tastings, then doing offsite tastings. She stepped away from working in the industry to focus on leading the WWS Rochester Chapter, and is currently working on WSET certification.
She first joined WWS as part of the Rochester Chapter in 2002 while working at Casa Larga, after hearing great things about the organization from Holly Howell, a friend and co-worker at Casa Larga and one of the women responsible for starting the WWS Rochester Chapter. At that time Andrea Coloruatolo-O'Neill was also a member of the WWS Board of Directors. She is very excited that the Finger Lakes chapter is once again up and running and is honored to be part of helping this chapter to thrive. Her vision for this chapter includes being a leader within the WWS organization, helping to bring recognition to the FLX wine region and promote our members within the wine industry.
Her interest and involvement in wine has helped her to increase her knowledge of wine and the people in the industry. While on the Rochester Board of Directors first as Secretary and then Chapter President was blessed with the opportunity to travel to Napa/Sonoma, California for National Board retreats. She has also attended multiple WWS Grand Events. With curent FLX Chapter President Donna's help, she was able to secure a WWS National Retreat here in the Rochester/Finger Lakes region in October, 2010. This was the first and only time that the national retreat
was held outside of Napa/ Sonoma. Due to her involvement in WWS she has lifelong friends here and across the country.