Sharing Best Practices Panel with Moderator Ray Johnson from Sonoma State University

Our final panel of the conference is a very exciting topic, Sharing Best Practices. We have brought in four experts to provide their views on what works and what doesn’t in wine tourism and then want to hear from audience members as well.

The panel includes:

  • Jonathan Rouse of the Okanagan School of Business
  • Jim Fiolek of Santa Barbara County Wines
  • Danene Beedle of Missouri Wines
  • Dr. Kyuho Lee of Sonoma State University

In addition, we have Ray Johnson, Director of Sonoma State University’s Wine Business Institute as moderator of the panel. Ray has been a big supporter of the conference and we were able to secure a few minutes of his time to answer the following questions:

What is the main function of the Wine Business Institute?
Our vision is to be the global leader in wine business research and education.  To that end, we study the issues that are most important to the wine industry and offer wine business classes at the graduate, undergraduate and professional levels.

Who does the WBI serve, both regarding students and others in the community?
The Wine Business Institute serves the wine industry both globally and locally.  Our mission is to create extraordinary learning experiences for our students and advance the best practices in wine business.  We fulfill this mission by:

  • Providing memorable and transformational educational programs for wine business professionals across the globe.
  • Convening and engaging the wine business community to generate economic prosperity across the entire industry, particularly in regions the industry is concentrated, such as the North Coast.

What significance to you think the first Wine Tourism Conference has?
There is great power in collaboration and the sharing of best practices.  The experience of the speakers and the attendees is what makes such a gathering so powerful.

What do you hope to see result from the Sharing Best Practices session at the conference?
I am always impressed by the new ideas that are created wherever one travels in the world of wine.  You might think you’ve seen it all and yet someone will surprise you, especially when you hit the road and venture outside of your local region.  This session will bring numerous and far-flung regions together in one room on one day in November.

Come prepared to offer your own best ideas about what has worked to promote wine tourism and to take notes on what has worked with other areas.