St. Catharines, ON : Debbie Zimmerman, CEO of the Grape Growers of Ontario, is pleased to announce that Matthias Oppenlaender was re-elected Chair of the Board of Directors on Wednesday, April 10, 2019, for a second three-year term.
“Our success as an organization is reflected through the on-going dedication of the Board of Directors. Our focus in 2019 is to continue to work with our partners and government to ensure we secure and strengthen the future of 100% Ontario-grown wines as part of the Province's modernization of retail wine sales,” commented Matthias Oppenlaender.
Matthias was born in Germany where he studied agriculture and viticulture before emigrating to Canada in 1984. Matthias, his wife Monica and their five children live in Niagara-on-the-Lake where they farm over 500 acres of vineyards. Matthias was elected Grape King by his fellow grape growers in 2006, and the following year was elected to the Grape Growers of Ontario’s Growers’ Committee and to the Board of Directors. In 2009 Matthias was elected Vice Chair of the Board, a position he held until first being elected Chair in 2016.
Bill Schenck, a fourth-generation grape grower in St. Catharines, has been re-elected Vice Chair of the Board of Directors. Bill has served on the GGO Growers’ Committee and Board since 2009, the same year he was Grape King, and represents the Grape Growers of Ontario on a number of industry committees including the Canadian Grapevine Certification Network, Niagara Regional Agricultural Policy and Action Committee, and Brock University’s CCOVI Advisory Committee.
The Board of Directors includes representation from across Ontario including Steve Pohorly and Erwin Wiens of Niagara-on-the-Lake, Jim Morrison of Lincoln, Brock Puddicombe of Winona, Robert Peck of Prince Edward County and Scott Wilkins of Amherstburg, who are all part way through their terms as Directors. Kevin Watson of Niagara-on-the-Lake and Doug Funk Jr. of Lincoln were also both re-elected to the Board.Source : Grape Growers of Ontario