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2024 Speakers

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Lydia Fenet

Founder and CEO of the Lydia Fenet Agency, Auctioneer and Author

Lydia Fenet is the founder and CEO of the Lydia Fenet Agency, a boutique agency representing best in class charity auctioneers. Over her two-decade long career, Lydia served as the Global Managing Director of Strategic Partnerships for Christie’s and reshaped the fundraising landscape as the world’s leading charity auctioneer. She has single handedly raised over one billion dollars for more than 800 organizations and broken-down countless barriers for women in the auction industry. Widely recognized for her poise and power onstage, she has stood alongside celebrities including Bruce Springsteen, Hugh Jackman, Elton John, Matt Damon and Jerry Seinfeld to raise record-breaking donations for the most notable charities across the globe. 


Lydia is the author of two best-selling books, The Most Powerful Woman in the Room is You & Claim Your Confidence as well as the podcast host of Claim Your Confidence in collaboration with Rockefeller Center.  Her first book was optioned by Netflix in 2022 for a series that will be produced by Chernin Entertainment starring Kiernan Shipka as the lead.


Lydia is represented by CAA and travels internationally to speak to companies about unlocking their sales potential, empowering people in the workplace and the art of public speaking. You can follow her auctions, antics, and anecdotes on Instagram @LydiaFenet.

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Joey Wölffer

Owner Joey Wölffer Stores, Co-owner Wölffer Estate Vineyard and Wölffer Kitchen

Wölffer is a New York native who grew up on Long Island's East End. She has a passion for fashion, wine, food, and the arts. She graduated from Vanderbilt University in 2004 with a Bachelor of Science in Human and Organizational Development. 

Wölffer and her half-brother Marc took over the winery in 2013 after the sudden death of their father, Christian Wölffer, who founded the winery almost 30 years earlier. Joey is leading the family in transforming the vineyard into a lifestyle brand, and says that great wineries are family run. She also has two daughters and enjoys competitive horseback riding. 


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Leto Paraskevopoulou

Gai’a Wines

Leto and Sofia are the daughters of Gai’a co-founders Yiannis Paraskevopoulou and Leon Karatsalos and make up the second generation at the winery. Leto became Chief Winemaker for Gai’a’s Santorini wines in 2022. She was born in Athens and studied in the UK, where she received degrees in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. Sofia has a degree in crop science, and as of this year, serves as Chief Agronomist for Gai’a’s wineries in both Nemea and Santorini.


Verónica Cousiño


Verónica Cousiño earned a degree in Business Administration from the Universidad Católica of Chile. In 2008, she joined the family business as a sales assistant. Her dedication and aptitude led her to become head of the winery’s marketing department in 2012. She is now the Export and Marketing Director of Cousiño-Macul, a position she’s held since January 2016.

Wanda Mann

East Coast Editor, The SOMM Journal and Founder, Wine With Wanda

Wanda Mann has been writing about wine for fifteen years. She is the East Coast Editor for The SOMM Journal and Tasting Panel magazines. Wanda's writing has also been published in Food & Wine, NAPA Magazine, VinePair, Saveur, and other publications. She has visited major wine regions and interviewed top winemakers, many of whom have joined Wanda for lively chats and virtual tastings on Instagram Live. Wanda's love of wine was kickstarted by her professional chef father and the two years she spent studying in Spain. An in-demand speaker and wine presenter, Wanda has been featured at the Food & Wine Classic in Aspen, the Women in Wine Leadership Symposium, the Charleston Wine + Food Festival, and the Nantucket Wine & Food Festival. Wanda is the immediate past president of Les Dames d'Escoffier New York, a non-profit organization that provides scholarships to women pursuing careers in food, wine & spirits, and hospitality. She also serves on the board of the Society of Wine Educators. 

Dr. Laura Catena

Catena Zapata Managing Director Owner of Luca Wines Founder of Catena Institute of Wine

Dr. Laura Catena is a fourth generation Argentine vintner, physician and wine writer. Born in Mendoza, Argentina, Catena obtained a B.S. degree (Magna Cum Laude) from Harvard University and a Medical Doctor degree from Stanford. She is currently Managing Director of Bodega Catena Zapata and of her own Luca Winery. During the past 25 years, she has been a practicing part-time physician of Emergency Medicine in San Francisco. In addition, she is the founder of the Catena Institute of Wine, which is dedicated to

preserving Malbec and to elevating Argentine Wine.

Throughout her career, Catena has received numerous distinctions, including the 2022 Woman of the Year Award, presented by The Drinks Business magazine. In March 2023, she was named “Old Vine Hero” by “The Old Vine Conference” and received the Meininger “Outstanding Achievement Award”. On July 12th, Catena Zapata was voted number one in the world at the World’s Best Vineyards 2023 award ceremony for over 125 VIPs held in La Rioja, Spain.

Under her managment, the family`s Adrianna Vineyard was awarded eight 100-point scores from some of the world’s most influential wine critics. Recently, Bodega Catena Zapata received Argentina’s 2017 “Extraordinary Winery Award” from Robert Parker Wine Advocate and Michelin Guide NY.

Laura is on the the Executive Leadership Board of the UC Davis and is also a board member of the UC Davis Department of Viticulture and Enology and is also a board member of the Fulbright Commission and WSET Honorary President 2023.

She is author of “Vino Argentino”, “Gold in the Vineyards” and of her newest book, “Malbec Mon Amour”, co-written with winemaker Alejandro Vigil.

During the past 25 years, she has been a practicing part-time physician of Emergency Medicine in San Francisco. In addition, she is the founder of the Catena Institute of Wine, which is dedicated to preserving Malbec and to

elevating Argentine Wine.

Jeany Cronk

Maison Mirabeau

Jeany Cronk founded Masion Mirabeau along with her husband, Stephen Cronk. The couple made the decision to leave the leafy suburbs of South London behind in exchange for the blue skies and sunshine of Provence, with three young children in tow. Jeany works closely on the Miason Mirabeau look and feel. Her big passions are interior design,

the French way of life, and of course, the inspirational flavors and food of Provence.

Erica Duecy

Founder and Podcast Host, Business of Drinks

Erica Duecy is founder of Business of Drinks, a podcast and consultancy, and one of the drinks industry’s most accomplished digital and content strategists. She has built publishing and marketing programs for Drizly, Union, and other hospitality and drinks tech companies. Previously, she was Chief Content Officer for the wine-discovery platform Pix, and Editor in Chief for the wine/spirits publications VinePair and SevenFifty Daily. She also has led digital editorial teams at Architectural Digest, Saveur, and Fodor’s Travel. Her content, podcast, and video programs have won more than 40 digital and editorial awards.


Leslie Sbrocco

Emmy-award winning wine expert and TV Host

Leslie Sbrocco is an award-winning author, speaker, consultant, and television host, Leslie Sbrocco, is known for her entertaining approach to wine, food, and travel, as well as inspiring others to live a life of passion. Sbrocco’s engaging personality, humor, and ability to connect with the audience – whether on screen or on stage – are her trademarks. 

As host of the PBS restaurant review series, Check Please! Bay Area, Sbrocco has won a James Beard award and four Emmy awards in 19 seasons on air. Her new PBS series, 100 DAYS, DRINKS, DISHES & DESTINATIONS, showcases Leslie’s adventures as she discovers global culinary treasures. It currently appears on more than 300 stations nationwide. 

Leslie is a regular guest on NBC’s Today Show and her work has appeared in multiple online and magazine publications. Her first book, Wine for Women: A Guide to Buying, Pairing and Sharing Wine (William Morrow), won the coveted Georges Duboeuf Best Wine Book of the Year award.

Sbrocco is one of the country’s most sought-after culinary and inspirational speakers and has showcased her energetic style at hundreds of events. She is also a respected judge at national and global wine competitions. 

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