The Michigan Wine Collaborative’s Inclusion & Expansion Committee is working to provide representation and advocacy for underserved people in the Michigan wine industry in order to increase inclusion and expansion in our industry.
MWC is taking the initiative with this committee in order to create a bigger, better, brighter, Michigan wine industry. MWC has been promoting the committee’s founding members and initiatives for 2021 on social media, media publications, and on the website. The initial collaborative effort is in thanks to a partnership with Graped Out, owned by George W.C. Walker III, an organization with the goal of taking the ‘boujee out of wine’. The committee has grown to feature Michigan growers, retailers, winemakers, industry suppliers, and more.
The committee’s launch of their fundraising effort to support an educational fund for BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color), students aspiring to further their wine education in 2021 is an innovative new opportunity for the Michigan wine industry as a whole. This fund will support the Michigan Wine Industry Recruitment Pipeline and help guide those aspiring to be in the wine industry, to choose Michigan wine.
We will begin towards an expanding Michigan wine industry by raising funds that will enable us to offer support to create and maintain a pipeline of recruitment, both for the industry and its consumers. It is our goal to specifically provide resources to support aspiring BIPOC students from Michigan obtaining Level 2 WSET OR the first year of the VESTA program. In 2021 we will award the MWC Inclusion & Expansion Educational Fund to one student with hopes to add additional student awardees annually.
We are proud to announce that 2023 marks the inaugural year of the collaborative wine project titled, The Dream. This exciting project is an epic collaboration among Inclusion & Expansion Committee members and the industry to create a benefit wine and strategy to fund the MWC Inclusion and Expansion Scholarship Fund. This fund aims to support the educational expenses for students of color in the state of Michigan who are seeking wine service certifications or wine production training and education. The 2022 edition of the Dream was created and launched by our committee with incredible efforts from the “Dream Team” featuring Inclusion & Expansion Committee Chair and Wine Specialist at House of Pure Vin, Chuck Jackson, MWC Vice President and Director of Hospitality Operations and Distribution at Chateau Chantal, Brian Lillie, Head Winemaker at Chateau Chantal, Brian Hosmer, Owners and Winemakers at Drew Ryan Wines, Peter King and Merrick Steele, and Owner and Sommelier at GRNoir, Shawtawn Brigham.
You can learn more and keep updated with The Dream by clicking HERE!
- Provide Scholarship Opportunities
- Support Mentorship Programs
- Increase marketing to include more Michigan wine drinkers representing BIPOC, Latinx, LGBTQ, and those living with disabilities
- Create Industry & Community Outreach Projects
- Expanding the Michigan wine industry and Michigan wine country to untapped populations and regions of the state
We could use your help. Areas of support include: financially, professionally, academically, as well as MWC member participation on the committee. Any resources are welcome and needed as we make up for lost time to grow our industry.