Purpose: The Women in Wine Caucus is a community created for women in the wine industry of New Jersey. This group was formed to provide a space for women to network with others in the industry and learn about all the different opportunities there are in wine. It’s not only tasting room managers and general managers, but its owners, winemakers, vineyard managers, journalists, sommeliers, consultants, distributors, and so many more. We are here to provide education and training that may not typically be offered such as heavy machinery training, maintenance training, dormant pruning training, tasting training, and so much more. In addition, we provide a network and connection to the women involved, providing opportunities for jobs and meeting others. We will also be offering internship opportunities in the future!
This group was created with the thought that nationwide, only 17% of women are in the industry. There are many reasons for the percentage, which include not thinking of this as a serious career path, gatekeeping in the industry, lack of diversity and inclusion, token hires, and so much more. We are here to increase that percentage and to make this industry more accessible to everyone. The present and future of what the wine industry looks like is and will continue to evolve; that is exactly what we want.
History: The first meeting was on July 18, 2021, between three ladies in wine wanting to make a change and provide a much-needed space for women in the industry.
Founder: Victoria Reader
Woodstown, NJ / Salem County / South Jersey native Victoria Reader conceived of the idea of Women in Wine to create a place for women involved in New Jersey Wine Country to come together and form an inclusive, dedicated, supported, and educated community.
While studying natural resource management and agriculture at the University of Delaware, Victoria originally wanted to pursue a career in Wildlife Biology. However, three years after graduating, she decided to make a career change and began working at South Jersey winery Auburn Road Vineyard Winery & Enoteca. This experience is where her passion for grape growing and viticulture began.
Still intrigued with Wildlife Biology, she went to Cape May to do seasonal shorebird work for a brief time; this is where she discovered Hawk Haven Vineyard & Winery and started discussing potential wine industry opportunities. She soon started working for Hawk Haven, but the more she learned, the more passionate she became. She soon after moved on to Stokelan Estate Winery as Vineyard Manager and Assistant Winemaker. In 2019, Victoria was involved with overlapping harvests; one at Stokelan Winery and the other with Hawk Haven Winery and remembers it being an unforgettable experience.
Most recently, Victoria transitioned to Assistant Winemaker and Vineyard Manager at Amalthea Cellars.
Over the years, Victoria learned that her greatest passions are within the entire growing experience and wine-making process; from checking the soil, and processing the grapes, to getting the bottle into someone’s hands. However, there just were not enough women in the industry, and she was determined to change that.
In 2021, she established Women in Wine and has led the group intending to create a safe space to exchange ideas, network, collaborate, and promote education by teaching the Women in Wine about different aspects of the industry.
Social Handles: @women_wine_nj (Instagram)
We will also be making a Facebook group for people not in the industry to keep up with what we are doing but that has not been create