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Viticulture briefs

Published: Sunday, January 6, 2013 at 4:00 a.m.
Last Modified: Friday, January 4, 2013 at 5:00 p.m.

Sonoma County Vintners hold annual meeting

The Sonoma County Vintners will hold its 2013 annual meeting on Thursday from 3 to 5:30 p.m.

John Gillespie, founder and CEO of Wine Opinions, will present new research on the Sonoma County wine industry. Presentations will begin at 3:30 p.m., and a reception with hors d’oevres will be held at 4:30 p.m.

The meeting will be held at Vintners Inn Conference Center, 4350 Barnes Road, Santa Rosa. RSVP at

Jan. 14 deadline to enter grapevine pruning contest

The Sonoma County Winegrape Commission will hold its ninth annual Youth Grapevine Pruning Contest and sixth annual Viticulture Challenge on Jan. 19.

The event will be held at 10 a.m. at SRJC Shone Farm, 6225 Eastside Road, Forestville. Check-in will begin at 9:30 a.m. Entry forms are due by Jan. 14.

Competitors age 9 to 19 will grouped by age and will be judged on skill, speed and safety. The contest is open to the public and admission is free. Refreshments will be served.

For pruning contest entries contact Pat Stornetta at 707-938-4011 or For the viticulture challenge contact Christine Neles at 707-938-0730 or Forms can be found at

Sommerfield named president of Lake County Winegrape Commission

Debra Sommerfield will become president of the Lake County Winegrape Commission, replacing longtime president Shannon Gunier when she steps down later this month.

“Debra’s breadth of experience in marketing, economic development and the private sector make her uniquely qualified to lead the winegrape commission in this exciting time,” LCWC Board Chair Peter Molnar said in a statement.

Gunier served as president for 20 years and built the LCWC from a fledgling organization to one of the premier wine organizations in the state, the group said.

“I’m thrilled with the decision. It lets me leave the commission in a strong position, knowing it will continue to progress under Debra’s leadership,” Gunier said in a statement.

Sommerfield was deputy chief administrative officer for economic development for Lake County. She has more than 15 years of experience in marketing and economic development in the public and private sectors.

— Compiled by Staff Writer Cathy Bussewitz. Submit items to

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