Top 50 most powerful women in wine: 20 – 11

11. SERENA SUTCLIFFE MW

11 Serena Sutcliffe credit World Gourmet Summit

Serena Sutcliffe MW. Credit: World Gourmet Summit

AGE: 67
As the head of Sotheby’s international wine department, Sutcliffe holds incredible power over buyers of secondary market wines in London, New York and Hong Kong. Joining the wine trade in 1971, Sutcliffe was the second woman ever to become a Master of Wine. A past chairman of the Institute of Masters of Wine, in addition to her duties at Sotheby’s, Sutcliffe writes about wine for various international publications, and lectures on wine in Europe, the US and Asia. Wine auctions in the Far East are becoming increasingly profitable for Sotheby’s, particularly those focused around classed growth Bordeaux and rare Burgundy. Her book, The Wines of Burgundy, is in its 8th edition.

One Response to “Top 50 most powerful women in wine: 20 – 11”

  1. I highly recommend Nancy Ponzi who be a strong candidate for the Top 50. Nancy and her husband Dick, were one of the original pioneers in the Oregon Wine Industry. She has led the way for the Willamette Valley and developed the foundation for our region.

    She co-founded The Consumers’ Food Council, which promotes environmental concerns of food and agriculture and the novel concepts of recycling, ingredient labeling and a legal definition of organic. This led to becoming a registered environmental lobbyist at the Oregon Legislature. Nancy also worked with the legislature to ensure Oregon’s label requirements are the strictest in the world – wineries must have 90% of the varietal on our labels.

    She helped create the !Salud! Foundation which provides healthcare for local vineyard workers, the International Pinot Noir Celebration (noted as one of the finest wine events in the world), Oregon Pinot Camp and the list goes on… Nancy and her husband also raised two powerful young women, Luisa who now makes the wines, and Maria who handles the sales and marketing.

    I was very fortunate to have a career with the Ponzi Family and learned so many valuable work ethics and tricks of the trade. These three women have been powerful not only in the Oregon wine community, but are recognized internationally for their achievements. They instilled the power in me that women in wine were as equal to the male dominated industry and gave me the confidence to achieve my dreams of owning 1) a brand development company for wineries, 2) starting my own winery, Retour as a single, young female and 3) my third business which focuses on the brokerage of rare and fines wines. I’ve been in the wine business since I was a sophomore in college. From the start, I have always been mentored and inspired by high achieving women in the industry. I never felt that women were anything but strong, powerful and inspirational leaders. I have enjoyed all of your selections so far, there are so many fabulous women in the wine community. Would love to see you consider Nancy Ponzi.

    Thank you,

    Lindsay Woodard
    Proprietor
    Retour Winery

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