LatinX Leadership: Hispanic winery owners making waves in Oregon

Oregon Wine Industry LatinX Leaders Sofia Torres-McKay, Sam Parra, and Cristina Gonzalez

My Latest in Oregon Wine Press:

LatinX Leadership

Hispanic winery owners making waves in Oregon

by L.M. Archer

Oregon Wine Industry LatinX Leaders Sofia Torres-McKay, Sam Parra, and Cristina Gonzalez


Historically, career paths for Hispanics in the U.S. wine industry branch one of two ways: vine tender or bottling line worker. However, recent trends toward greater diversity translate into better opportunities for Latinos. Oregon already leads the way in this arena, from increased winery and vineyard ownership, to leadership roles.

“Oregon’s Hispanic wine grape growers, winemakers and business professionals have enriched every aspect of our statewide community for six decades so far,” said Tom Danowski, Oregon Wine Board president. “They have brought their global experiences, innovative techniques, inspiring energy and collaborative instincts to help elevate Oregon to its position among the world’s most esteemed viticultural areas.”

Meet some of Oregon’s most dynamic LatinX power players contributing to their wine communities today:

Honoring Ancestors

“Some are born great, some achieve greatness, and some have greatness thrust upon them,” wrote Shakespeare. For many Oregon LatinX wine industry leaders, honoring ancestors also proves important. “I was inspired by my family back in Argentina and, now, Oregon,” said Juan Pablo “JP” Valot, owner of Valcan Cellars. “Everything started with my nonnis (grandfathers). They showed me the importance of hard work in the vineyard and in the winery industry, and the importance of the grapes and wine quality. My father instilled in me the love for having my own business and passing this legacy to my children.”

Valot’s father hails from French immigrants; his mother from Italian, and many of his family members worked for one of Argentina’s largest wineries in Mendoza. Valot and his wife, Doris Cancel, moved to Oregon in 2003, where producers like Willamette Valley Vineyards, Soter Vineyards and Dobbes Family Estate employed his talents…READ FULL ARTICLE HERE.


Link to my article in The Buyer on “Celebrating Hispanic Roots” here.

Link to more articles by L.M. Archer here.

Link to L.M. Archer wine reviews here.


Copyright © L.M. Archer. All Rights Reserved.


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