Advisory Board

We are proud to have an excellent Advisory Board that guides our decisions regarding content and speakers.

nancy-burgnerNancy Burgner

Nancy is Chief Marketing Manager of Touring & Tasting Marketing and Media, which provides a wide array of print, video, digital and mobile resources to help wine lovers plan a memorable trip to regions across the U.S. Previously she was the co-owner and associate publisher of Destination Wine Country Magazine and before that spend 16 years with ISLANDS magazine.


george-christieGeorge Christie

George is president of the Wine Industry Network, THE business resource for the wine industry. Winery and viticulture professionals use WIN for free to research products and services from premium industry suppliers, find contact and product information, and receive free supplier news, deals, and updates. George is also managing partner of Saini Vineyards.

ray-johnsonRay Johnson

Ray is Executive Director of the Wine Business Institute at Sonoma State University. His role includes operational oversight of the Wine Spectator Learning Center, scheduled to open on campus in 2017. Ray is also Assistant Director of the San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition and the Director of the People’s Choice Wine Awards of Lake County

nancy-lightNancy Light

Nancy is Vice President of Communications at the Wine Institute, a public policy association of 1,000 California wineries and affiliated businesses dedicated to enhancing the environment for the responsible consumption and enjoyment of wine. Prior to her work at the Wine Institute, Nancy was Public Relations Manager at Kobrand Corporation and Vice President of Public Relations at Robert Mondavi.

jackie-saundersJackie Saunders

Jackie is vice president of marketing at Visit Loudoun, where she is responsible for the overall marketing and PR strategy as well as program development for this agency tasked with promoting Loudoun County, Virginia. She was previously Director of Media Relations at the Loudoun Convention and Visitors Association and before that spent 12 years at the Canadian Tourism Commission.

colby-smithColby Smith

Colby is Executive Director and Co-Founder of the Concierge Alliance of Napa Valley and Sonoma (CANVAS). She also operates a private Concierge service, Wine Country Access, providing her clients with very special access to wineries and other venues, customized for their unique interests, and wine experience. Prior to that she was at the Concierge Desk of Villagio Inn & Spa for almost 4 years.
paul-wagnerPaul Wagner

Paul Wagner is president of Balzac Communications & Marketing and is also an instructor for Napa Valley College’s Viticulture and Enology department, Sonoma State’s Wine Business Program, and the Culinary Institute of America at Greystone.  Paul has judged many national and international wine competitions and, with Rick Kushman of Capital Public Radio, hosts “Bottle Talk”, a weekly conversation about wine.

january-wieseJanuary Wiese

January is Executive Director and was previously Event Director of Texas Hill Country Wineries, which represents 51 wineries in the popular (5 million annual visitors) Texas Hill Country.  Prior to that she served as Hospitality Manager at Flat Creek Estate. Her major experience in the wine industry came via almost 18 years spent at her family’s winery, JanKris.