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Mentorship Program

The 2024 Mentorship application term is now closed. 

If successful as a mentorship applicant, you will get a chance to receive rare one-on-one career advice and coaching in the fields of wine service and restaurant management; wine writing and judging; wine education and more!


What to expect from Mentorship

Let us share a bit about what to expect from participating in our mentorship program.

There is no such thing as too little or too much experience when considering if you can benefit from mentorship. We have mentors poised to help no matter if you are brand new to the industry or an

Where and when does mentorship take place?

  • There are two (2) types of mentorship programs being offered:

    • Intensive subject bootcamps led by one of our mentors for a small group of three to four mentees

    • Five (5) one-on-one, mentorship placements, starting January through to the end of December, 2024 

      • Successful mentorship candidates will receive the opportunity for up to 26 one-on-one Zoom sessions with their Mentor placement (that’s one call every other week for 12 months).

How do I apply?

  • Click the application button below to apply for the 2024 mentorship term. 

  • We are accepting applications online from November  1 through to and including November  24.

  • All applications are reviewed from November 24 to December 8.

  • Successful applicants are informed and announced on December 15.



Have additional questions about the mentorship program? Contact us here and one of the Vinequity mentorship facilitators will get back to you.

established veteran. Candidates who are selected are matched with a mentor who best matches your expressed areas of interest and your key goals.

Your mentor is an advisor and champion who will help you over the course of the next year. They can help you strategize a way forward through a particular certification level or stage of your career. While many of our participants do find themselves with new work opportunities during the mentorship term, the primary goal of our mentorship program is not job placement. Mentors can help you network more effectively and help you position yourself to potential employers, business partners and the like.

While mentors bring a wealth of knowledge and experience to the dynamic, the process is ultimately driven by you, the mentee. You set the goals and define the type of support you need.

Vinequity will provide tools and tips along the way to ensure a successful experience, and we remain a resource for any additional support as needed. 

Who is eligible?

  • Anyone who identifies as BIPOC and is pursuing a career or advanced education in wine / winemaking is encouraged to apply

  • Candidates will be selected by Vinequity and the Mentorship team

  • Spaces are limited per term, so candidates are encouraged to reapply in subsequent terms

Meet the Mentors

Andrea Backstrom

A.M.C.C. Inc.


Steven Campbell

Campbell Kind Wines


José Luis Fernández

Advanced Sommelier

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Jennifer Huether

Master Sommelier

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Elyse Lambert

Master Sommelier


Elsa Macdonald

Master of Wine

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Kelly Mason


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Vincent Morrow

Master Sommelier


Geoffrey Moss

Master of Wine

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Shiraz Mottiar

Winemaker, Malivoire Wine

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Patrick Okubo

Aloha Wine Foundation


Seema Pal

Director Operations CAPS and Educator


Christopher Sealy

Alo Food Group


John Szabo

Master Sommelier


Mariko Tajiri

That's Life, National Brand Manager


Donald Ziraldo

Ziraldo Estate Winery

The Mentors
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