By Andy Young

The winners of the 2016 Australian Women in Wine Awards (AWIWA) have been named, in a video broadcast streamed live around the country.

This year’s awards saw winners named in six categories including Winemaker of the Year; Viticulturist of the Year and Owner/Operator of the Year.

There were seven award winners named in six categories:

  • Winemaker of the Year, Sponsored by Wine Ark – Emma Norbiato, Calabria Family Wines, Riverina NSW
  • Viticulturist of the Year, Sponsored by Wine Australia – Prue Henschke, Henschke, Eden Valley SA
  • Owner / Operator of the Year, Sponsored by Halliday – Jenny Semmler, 919 Wines, Riverland SA
  • Researcher of the Year, Sponsored by Lallemand – Roberta De Bei & Cassandra Collins (team)
  • Workplace Champion of Change, Sponsored by Vinomofo – Iain Riggs & Brokenwood Wines, Hunter Valley NSW
  • Cellar Door Person of the Year – Rebecca Barr, Fernfield Wines, Eden Valley SA

Speaking after the winners were named, the AWIWA Chair, Jane Thomson said: “On behalf of the entire Board of the AWIWA I want to extend our sincere congratulations to all the winners. 

“It is truly a delight to see the breadth of talent and dedication recognised. We know these awards are having a positive impact on the conversation around gender equality in our wine community, and we know that the winners of the 2016 AWIWA powerfully demonstrate the contribution that women make.”

Winemaker of the Year, Emma Norbiato, was understandably delighted with the award and thanked the Calabria family for giving her the opportunity. 

“When I had my first child, Archie, I was at a cross roads in my career, unsure at how I would balance my new role as a mum and work-life,” Norbiato said. “I was fortunate I was approached by Calabria Family Wines and developed a relationship with the Calabria family to make motherhood and winemaking compatible.”

Andrew Calabria, the family’s Sales and Marketing Manager, added: “We are extremely pleased Emma has received much earned recognition, she is an asset to our winemaking team. Her dedication shines throughout the Calabria wine portfolio, in particular our alternative wine styles, which Emma, along with the team around her, put so much passion into placing Riverina on the map to produce European influenced styles. A great advocate for the Riverina region, we are so proud of Emma’s achievements and representation of Calabria Family Wines.”

The judging panel for the awards included all the members of the AWIWA Board – newly appointed winemaker for Irivine Wines Rebekah Richardson; Chair of Wine Australia Brian Walsh; Oliver’s Taranga CEO and winemaker, Corrina Wright; Stargazer Wines owner & winemaker Samantha Connew; eminent wine writer Jeni Port; esteemed wine marketer Toni Carlino; as well as AWIWA Chair, The Fabulous Ladies’ Wine Society founder and newly awarded Digital Wine Communicator of the Year 2016, Jane Thomson – plus 2015 winners Rebecca Duffy from Holm Oak Vineyards and Irina Santiago-Brown from Inkwell Wines.

“These awards give hope to the future generations of women coming through the wine community that there will be other women who are willing to lift them up and support them,” said board member Rebekah Richardson. “It brings a cohesiveness we have not seen before and a way for our achievements to be highlighted and celebrated in an inclusive and encouraging environment. I would hate to think that the next generations have to struggle with the bias that I have seen through my career.”

The Shout Team

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