Meet Australian wine’s Future Leaders

19 May 2017
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Congratulations to the 16 talented and driven professionals from the Australian grape and wine community who have been chosen from a highly competitive field to be the Future Leaders 2017.

Future Leaders is coordinated by Wine Australia in partnership with the Winemakers' Federation of Australia (WFA) and Australian Vignerons (formerly Wine Grape Growers Australia). The Future Leaders program is designed to develop participants’ leadership capabilities and encourage innovation and thoughtful debate on the future of the sector.

The Future Leaders of 2017 are:

  • Alexia Roberts

Galvanized Wine Group (Penny’s Hill)

  • Anthony Robinson

Treasury Wine Estates

  • Chris Dent

Gorton Drive Estates

  • Chris Morrison

Sommelier/Wine Consultant

  • Claire Doughty


  • Gwyneth Olsen

Pepper Tree Wines

  • Marc Soccio

Wine Advisor

  • Mary Hamilton

Hugh Hamilton Wines

  • Natalie Pizzini

Pizzini Wines

  • Paula Edwards

Winegrapes Australia

  • Richard Angove

Angove Family Winemakers

  • Richard Leask

Leask Agri

  • Sarah Collingwood

Four Winds Vineyard

  • Shirley Fraser De Zolt

Byrne Vineyards

  • Simon Killeen

Simão & Co. Wines

  • Wes Pearson

Australian Wine Research Institute

Richard Leask said on learning of his selection, ‘I’m excited and apprehensive; the alumni list is impressive and a little daunting! I suppose it feels like just before vintage, you have some idea what you’re in for and that it will challenge you at times but you can’t wait to get into it.

‘I’m hoping to discover personal leadership strengths and weaknesses and the tools to improve on both. To open up a new network of people that will keep challenging each other and the wine industry to be the best it can be.’

Sarah Collingwood echoed the sentiment saying, ‘I’m looking forward to the Future Leaders program challenging me both professionally and personally. It’s a great opportunity for me to look up from running my business to establish new connections in the industry and explore the future of business, marketing and governance.’

Wine Australia CEO Andreas Clark said the calibre of applicants again reflected the impressive talent working in the Australian grape and wine sector.

‘The Future Leaders program is an opportunity to bring together emerging leaders from all parts of our sector and help them develop the skills to work collaboratively and creatively toward a common goal for long-term prosperity. It’s a unique leadership program that’s been specifically designed for the needs of the Australian grape and wine sector.

‘The future success of our sector is dependent on the strength and capabilities of our people. We want the best and brightest leading the Australian grape and wine community and it’s vital we support them by investing in their professional development so they can confidently lead the sector in the years to come.’

Andrew Weeks and Tony Battaglene, the Chief Executive Officers from AV and WFA, said they were proud to once again support the Future Leaders program.

‘The expression of interest from such a large and highly competent field of applicants suggest that the future of the grape and wine sector is in good hands. We look forward to meeting the participants and working with them during the progress of the course’, Andrew and Tony said.

Future Leaders 17 program

In a dynamic and evolving sector, this year’s program will explore new avenues in business, marketing and governance, and will also look at how global economics will shape the future.

Participants will look at new technology, how they can amplify the innovative thinking that already exists in our sector, and they will learn contemporary approaches to people development and commercial success.

They’ll hear from some of Australia’s best speakers on topics such as innovation, leadership and culture, and they’ll connect with people from across the grape and wine community, including Future Leaders alumni.


For media enquiries please contact

Charmaine Glase – Wine Australia
Senior Communications Manager
Phone: 08 8228 2032 / 0409 859 960

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This content is restricted to wine exporters and levy-payers. Some reports are available for purchase to non-levy payers/exporters.