Women in Wine launch pilot national mentoring program

A nationwide mentoring program has been launched to help women within the New Zealand wine industry achieve success. It’s an initiative of Women in Wine, which was launched by New Zealand Winegrowers in 2017.

Women in any role within the wine industry were welcomed to apply to be a mentor or mentee in June. Applications were then assessed by a selection panel and, after careful consideration, suitable mentor-mentee matches were made.

“The response has been very good around the country and the calibre of applicants was high,” said Nicky Grandorge, Women in Wine National Co-ordinator. “This is a fantastic opportunity for ambitious women within the industry to benefit from one-on-one sessions with some of New Zealand’s leading women in wine.”

The mentoring program is specific to the NZ wine industry and has a robust structure, so it can evolve into a larger program for both men and women in the future. The bespoke program was created by Fiona Fenwick of Fifteen Minutes, who has launched many successful mentoring programs over the years and is also a New Zealand Winegrowers member.

The mentors met in Auckland on 11 July for a training and networking session.

“Having eight highly experienced women in wine in one room, who are passionate about wine and the future of our industry, created a very exciting and dynamic buzz. It sets a very high standard for the mentoring program from the very start,” Grandorge said.

The Women in Wine mentors


The mentors, who are all giving their time voluntarily, are: Carol Bunn, Nat Christensen, Erica Crawford, Jane Hunter, Priscila Muir, Jen Parr, Kate Radburnd and Tracy Taylor.

The mentors will meet their mentees at the beginning of August and the pilot programme will run for six months, with the aim of rolling it out more widely early next year.

New Zealand Winegrowers CEO Philip Gregan says mentoring is a great way to fast track someone’s skills and knowledge.

“This program is going to play an important role in growing our future leaders and strengthening the wine industry as a whole. Not only does the individual benefit, but also those around them,” Gregan said.

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