AUSTIN – Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples last week announced his appointments to the Texas Wine Industry Development and Marketing Advisory Committee. The committee is charged with advising the Texas Department of Agriculture on various initiatives designed to strengthen the impact of the growing Texas wine industry on our state’s economy.
"The Texas wine industry is a rising star that has more than a $1.35 billion impact on the Texas economy," Commissioner Staples said. "Texas is ranked fifth in the nation for wine production, and the Texas Wine Industry Development and Marketing Advisory Committee will help continue to grow this thriving industry."
Appointments reflect the diversity of the Texas wine industry, representing all sectors in the production chain, from grape growers to consumers.
The 2010 Texas Industry Development and Marketing Advisory Committee:
* 16 Grape Grower and Winery Representatives:
o Ed Auler – Fall Creek Vineyards
o Nicole Bendele – Becker Vineyards
o Paul Bonarrigo – Messina Hof Winery & Resort
o Bob Cottle – Pleasant Hill Winery
o Alphonse Dotson – Grape grower
o Gary Elliot – Driftwood Vineyards
o Gary Gilstrap – Texas Hills Vineyards
o Mark Hyman – Llano Estacado Winery
o Rick Naber – Flat Creek Estates
o Neal Newsom – Grape grower
o Gabe Parker – Homestead Winery
o Don Pullum – Sandstone Cellars
o Bobby Smith – La Buena Vida Winery
o Susan Stegar – Tara Vineyard & Winery
o Cord Switzer – Fredericksburg Winery
o Michael Timmons – Grape grower
* One Wholesaler Representative:
o Alan Dreeben – Republic Beverage
* One Package Store Representative:
o John Rydman – Spec’s Liquor Stores
* One Retailer Representative:
o Devon Broglie – Whole Foods
* One Researcher Representative:
o Charles Allen – Texas Agrilife Extension
* Two Consumer Representatives:
o Russ Kane – Wine blogger
o Carlton Schwab – Texas Economic Development Council
* One Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission Representative:
o Steve Greinert – T.A.B.C.
Half of the committee members will serve a one-year term and the other half will begin serving two-year staggered terms. For more information about the Texas wine industry, visit www.gotexanwine.org. Texas wine news and events also can be found on Facebook and Twitter.