Deborah Brenner graduated from the University of Delaware with degrees in English and Journalism, and was soon hired by a television and film technology company that required international travel to countries for whom wine is a part of everyday life. After over 20 years in the male-dominated field of high-end technology and owning a marketing and public relations firm, Ms. Brenner discovered during a fortuitous trip to Napa and Sonoma that many women in the wine industry – like her own – were under-recognized. Compelled to tell their stories, she authored a bestselling collection of profiles on women in the wine industry, Women of the Vine: Inside the World of Women Who Make, Taste and Enjoy Wine, which Wine Spectator named a Critical Read of 2007.
Through the process of writing the book and championing its subjects, Ms. Brenner became inspired to enter the wine business herself, releasing wine from a first-of-its-kind collective of seven artisan women winemakers from Napa, Sonoma and Paso Robles. For the following seven years, Ms. Brenner learned the business inside and out. Ultimately, however, all the money, blood, sweat and (a lot) of tears could not foster women in the wine industry the way Brenner had hoped, which led her to shut down the Women of the Vine wine brand and return to the drawing board.
One year later, Brenner organized the inaugural Women of the Vine Global Symposium, held in March of 2015, which quickly sold out to 500 women from five countries. Due to the overwhelming response, Brenner and the Women of the Vine Advisory Board went to work developing a consortium that supports professionals in the alcohol beverage industry year-round. Thus emerged the Women of the Vine Alliance, a membership-based organization, anchored by the annual Symposium, whose mission is to empower and equip women worldwide to advance their careers in the alcohol beverage industry, fostering gender diversity and talent development across the industry at large.
Ms. Brenner has received a Rising Star Award from Women for WineSense (2008), a New York Small Business Administration Women in Business Champion Of The Year (2009), a New York City National Association of Women Business Owners Signature Award (2010), the Lillian Vernon Award for Outstanding Community Service by the Women's Enterprise Development Center (2011), a NY Women in Communications Rising Star Award (2013), and the Rockland Business Women's Network Woman of the Year Award (2014).
Kyndal is a marketing and public relations professional living on the beautiful Central Coast of California.
Kyndal began her marketing career right out of college, working as a Marketing Specialist at an advertising agency in her hometown of Visalia, CA, where she also served as the Assistant Editor of a regional style, art, and culture magazine published by the agency. She then followed her heart to wine country where she worked a number of years for a public relations and marketing firm in San Luis Obispo. There, she represented a variety of clients in the lifestyle and hospitality industry ranging from restaurants and wineries to resorts and large-scale consumer and trade events. Having originally discovered her love of wine while studying in Paris for a summer and traveling on her own to Italy, it wasn't long before she fell deeper in love with the wine industry, tasting and touring her way through Paso Robles and the Edna Valley.
In her years as a marketing and PR professional, Kyndal has led teams to produce notable large-scale events for media, trade and consumers alike while also managing various responsibilities including website management and content development, guiding brand messaging, budget management, administration of board agendas, social media marketing, media outreach and more. Her eye for design, creative copywriting skills, and finesse, paired with a positive outlook allows her to manage projects with assurance of satisfaction and success.
Kyndal is a graduate of UC Santa Barbara, where she earned a B.A. in Communication and a Minor in Art History. When she isn’t working on building awareness and marketing strategy for Women of the Vine & Spirits, Kyndal can be found living the “SLO” life with her fiancé, enjoying the many fantastic wineries, restaurants, breweries, beaches and hiking trails San Luis Obispo County has to offer.
Nancy Ellen Paquette was born and raised in Westchester County, NY. She has a well-rounded professional background that includes over 30 years of global experience in Fortune 500 corporations and entrepreneurial settings. During this time, she also received her degree in Retail Business Management from SUNY Westchester Community College and raised two wonderful children, Ryan and Elizabeth. Nancy spent the first 24 years of her career in the chemical and pharmaceutical sector at the same company. Although she held several positions in multiple divisions over the years, the last 10 years working as a Corporate Event Manager was truly her niche. Part of managing a variety of domestic and international events included the responsibility of food and beverage coordination. It was from these experiences, that her passion for wine began.
Since 2007, this avid enthusiast has pursued a journey into the world of wine. In addition to attending a multitude of wine-related events, she has toured many of the local wineries and vineyards in the Hudson Valley and Long Island wine regions. Her more formal education included the completion of a Captain’s Course offered through the Sommelier Society of America and The Certified Specialist of Wine course through the Society of Wine Educators. She is continuing to study towards her wine certification. Her professional experience has included work as a Personal Wine Consultant and as a Brand Ambassador/Tasting Demonstrator.
Also a vocalist, Nancy has also been performing at many social and private events since she was young. For the last several years, she had performed at local venues as a lead vocalist with an acoustic duo and is often invited to make guest appearances with several additional bands from Westchester. In 2012-2013, she sang with the choir at St. Matthew’s RC church in Hastings-on-Hudson. She has even had some fun participating in and winning several vocal competitions on the karaoke circuit. Currently, as a tribute to her late father who suffered from Alzheimer’s, she has been recording some of his favorite songs. Having assisted her mother with his caregiving, she recognizes the importance that music has on people with memory-related illness.
Spending time with her family, cooking, gardening, hiking, reading, and photography are a few of her favorite past times. Over the past several years, she has also gotten involved with volunteering and fundraising activities for several charities including the American Cancer Society and the Alzheimer’s Association. As an animal lover and conservationist, she also supports organizations that are involved in protecting our wildlife.