About Us

BOARD, COMMITTEES & STAFF

The Ontario Wine Appellation Authority is led by a Board of Directors representing wineries, stakeholders and the Ontario Government with support from a technical committee.  The staff organization, including independent inspectors, implements the regulatory framework.

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

Ontario's Wine Appellation Authority is a not for profit corporation governed by an independent Board of Directors. Nine Directors are elected from winery members and one each appointed from the Ontario government, the Grape Growers of Ontario and the Ontario Restaurant, Hotel and Motel Association.

Of the elected Directors, 3 each are elected from large, medium and small class wineries with VQA wine sales of over 750,000 litres, 100,000 to 750,000 litres and under 100,000 litres respectively. Provision is also made for regional representation, including at least one Director from each primary appellation.

The Board of Directors is responsible for governance and setting strategic goals for the Appellation Authority. It oversees staff management and ensures effective policies are in place to carry out the regulatory and corporate functions of the organization. The Board of Directors meets 6 times annually.

A public Annual General Meeting is held each year, typically in July, to present a report on the Authority’s operations, present financial statements and conduct elections to the Board.

Board of Directors (January 1, 2022)

  • Brian Schmidt, (President & Chair) Vineland Estates Winery
  • Ken Douglas, (Past Chair) The Thirteenth Street Wine Corp.
  • Dan Sullivan, (Vice Chair) Rosehall Run Vineyards
  • Derek Cartlidge, (Treasurer) Colio Estates Winery
  • Louise Engel, (Secretary) Featherstone Estate Winery
  • Greg Berti, Andrew Peller Ltd.
  • Amelie Boury, Chateau des Charmes
  • Tony Elenis, Ontario Restaurant, Hotel and Motel Association
  • Paul Kassebaum, Arterra Wines
  • Nadia Senchuk, Leaning Post Wines
  • Mary Shenstone, Government of Ontario
  • Paul Speck, Henry of Pelham
  • Kevin Watson, Grape Growers of Ontario
STANDARDS DEVELOPMENT COMMITTEE

STANDARDS DEVELOPMENT COMMITTEE

The Standards Development Committee of the Ontario Wine Appellation Authority is charged with reviewing proposed regulation changes and providing advice on the implementation of existing regulations. It functions as a technical advisory committee to the Board of Directors and may perform research or make recommendations at the request of the Board.

The committee is composed of experienced winemakers, academics and other professionals with technical expertise required to evaluate viticultural and winemaking practices in Ontario. All sizes of wineries are represented, along with post-secondary institutions and the LCBO.

Committee Members (January 2022)

  • Gabriel Demarco (Chair), Cave Spring Cellars
  • Lawrence Buhler, Henry of Pelham Estate Winery
  • Derek Barnett, Karlo Estates
  • Dorina Brasoveanu, LCBO Quality Assurance
  • Allison Christ, Colio Wines
  • Levi De Loryn, Arterra Wines Canada
  • Emma Garner, Andrew Peller Ltd.
  • Ron Giesbrecht, Niagara College
  • Tom Green, Diamond Estate Wines
  • JL Groux, Stratus Vineyards
  • Martin Janz, Pelee Island Winery
  • Jay Johnston, Hidden Bench Estate Winery
  • Belinda Kemp, CCOVI, Brock University
  • Rob Power, Creekside Estate Winery
  • Katherina Radcliffe, Ontario Wine Appellation Authority
  • Brian Schmidt, Vineland Estates
  • Jan Schulte-Bisping, Paglione Estate Winery
  • David Sheppard, Flat Rock Cellars
  • Ann Sperling, Southbrook Vineyards
  • Rene Van Ede, The Foreign Affair Winery
  • Jim Willwerth, CCOVI, Brock University
STAFF INFORMATION

STAFF INFORMATION

  • Laurie Macdonald, Executive Director
  • Katherina Radcliffe, Director, Wine Standards and Communications 
  • Peter Harris, Director, Audit and Compliance 
  • Susan Piovesan, IT Systems and Inspections
  • Tricia Ramnath, Wine Testing Coordinator, Administrative Assistant
  • Stan Loree, Accountant