Join us for the first edition of the
Women of the Vine & Spirits
Business Development Series!
Calling all entrepreneurs! Our first video chat session will be focused on Entrepreneurship and is open to all Women of the Vine & Spirits members to join! This is designed to be a networking opportunity to connect and learn more from one another.
Are you an entrepreneur or are you thinking about taking the leap? Then this is the chat for you!
- Raising Capital
- The Good, the Bad, the Ugly
- How to Delegate Effectively and When
- and More...because we want to hear what YOU want to chat about!
What questions do you have for the chat? Please let us know so we can address them all together, live!
Lead by Entrepreneurs/Members:
Deborah Brenner, Founder & CEO, Women of the Vine & Spirits
Tawnya Falkner, CEO, Le Grand Courtage
Kaitlyn Skloss, Owner & Chief Marketing Officer, PuraVida / Founder, Luckenbach Road Whiskey and Distillery
Mina Trujillo, Founder & Chief Creative Officer, ChraftPR / Founder & CEO, Tequila Mixology / DragosCantina
Keep the conversation going by joining the Entrepreneur Group, HERE!
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, Deborah 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, Deborah 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, Deborah 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 she had hoped, which led her to shut down the Women of the Vine wine brand and return to the drawing board.
One year later, Deborah organized the inaugural Women of the Vine Global & Spirits Global Symposium, held in March of 2015, which quickly sold out to 500 women from five countries. Due to the overwhelming response, Deborah and the Women of the Vine & Spirits Advisory Board went to work developing a consortium that supports professionals in the alcohol beverage industry year-round. Thus, emerged Women of the Vine & Spirits, a membership-based organization, anchored by the annual Global 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.
Deborah 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), the Rockland Business Women's Network Woman of the Year Award (2014), the Rockland Business Women's Network Woman of the Year Award (2014), American Cancer Society Dr. Louis Berger Award (2017), Wine Enthusiast Wine Star Award Person of the Year Nominee (2017), and Las Vegas Inc.“Woman to Watch” (2018).
Tawnya Falkner is the Proprietor/CEO of Le Grand Courtâge. A few years ago, our founder Tawnya Falkner took the leap, gave up her career as a real estate developer/designer in San Francisco, and moved to France after seeing a gap in the sparkling wine category relating to price, palate and packaging. Her vision was to create an affordable everyday luxury which embodies the French spirit of joie de vivre (joy of life) and elevates life’severyday moments. Ultimately Tawnya’s journey resulted in Le GrandCourtâge, an award-winning French sparkling wine, and the newly launched Très Chic Rosé.
Having grown up in a 3-street farm town, Tawnya recalls Sunday dinners and backyard barbeques as some of her fondest memories from childhood. Her small-town roots evoked a feeling of wanderlust early in life, and having traveled around the globe, Tawnya realized that food and wine are the great common denominator between cultures – and the *pop* of a cork is a universal sound that elicits a smile.
While making wine may seem like a departure from Tawnya's background in design and real estate development and design, it actually utilizes many of the same skill-sets. Development is very multi-faceted and blends creative, legal, financial and logistical skills; the same is true of wine. Tawnya was educated at University of California Los Angeles and later became a co-founder of two, still successfully operating, firms Strategic Development Solutions and Domus Development. She has acted as both a developer and a consultant for government agencies, corporations and nonprofit groups. Tawnya understands what is necessary to implement a vision and address market opportunity, while balancing financial realities and navigating complex regulatory requirements.
After studying the French wine regions, writing a business plan, and having success with building Le Grand Courtâge into a national brand, Tawnya has realized that creating a new sparkling wine is a combination of art, science and extreme attention to both the brand and channel strategy. She is passionate about the category andherdepthandbreadthofpriorexperiencelendwelltobuildingaCPGcompany. Additionally,Tawnyahas retained or partnered with industry leaders versed in all aspects of the wine industry in order to accelerate the growth: production, fulfillment, compliance, sales and marketing. Today in our obsession to be connectedthrough technology, we’ve lost a lot of personal contact and connection, so Tawnya set out to create a product which celebrates shared experiences and (re)connects people. Ultimately, we are in the happiness business –Le Grand Courtâge is about memories and laughter and we aim to be the best part of someone’s day.
Kaitlyn Callaluca Skloss is currently the brand owner and chief marketing officer of Pura Vida Spirits Company. Prior to this role, she gained extensive marketing andcommunications experience at NPR’s national office in Washington, DC, and atDatawatch Systems in Bethesda, Maryland. Prior to her marketing and communications roles, she work for a private investment group in Greenwich, Connecticut. Demonstrating her trademark self-sufficiency and commitment to hard work, she also put herself through private college by working three jobs. In her executive role today, she is an active corporate member of Women of the Vine and
Spirits, an organization that provides women in the alcohol industry a network of colleagues, mentors, and opportunities to develop and advance their personal brands and careers. She also brings a passion forcommunity service. She’s been involved in World Affairs Council, American Business Women’s Association,Jewish Federation, Women of Wardrobe—Dress for Success Program, Barbara Bush’s Ladies for LiteracyFoundation, and AniMeals & Meals on Wheels.
Mina is Founder and CEO of Tequila Mixology, a craft, small batch tequila company and Founder and Managing Director of Chraft PR, a boutique Public Relations, Strategic Marketing, Advertising and Conference Producing Agency. Mina’sexpertise is also within the areas of product development having developed multiple consumer packaged goods and as a patent holder for a packaging invention. Mina started her career at the global accounting firm Arthur Andersen in a marketing capacity and has worked with various Fortune 500 companies throughout her career. On the PR/marketing side, Mina counts world leading organizations and
political figures as clients as well as Capital Markets and Private Equity Groups. Mina has founded 3 companies and successfully exited 1 of those companies. Mina serves on the board of Hollygrove, Anastasia Foundation, LA CAUSA and as an ambassador for the Clinton Foundation. Mina was born in Guadalajara, Jalisco and grew up in Los Angeles.