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Board members

Gary Hewitt

President

204-948-9463

Sylvia Jansen

Past President

A wine educator, speaker and writer, Sylvia is a sommelier instructor and wine consultant at Banville & Jones Wine Co. in Winnipeg. She holds the WSET Diploma in Wine & Spirits, and sommelier certification through the International Sommelier Guild and the Court of Master Sommeliers; and wine credentials from the Society of Wine Educators. Sylvia has also co-developed Banville & Jones' wine appreciation courses for the public, wine training courses for restaurant personnel and management, and is a guest wine instructor at Red River College. Her wine study and travel have taken her through Canada's wine regions; California and Oregon in the U.S.A.; and to Europe (many parts of France, including numerous trips to Champagne, Italy, Spain, and Portugal), and to South Africa.  

204-948-9463

Christopher Sprague

Vice President

Wine director of WOW! Hospitality in Winnipeg, and Sommelier at prestigious 529 Wellington, Christopher directs the wine program that holds the Wine Spectator Magazine’s “Best of Award of Excellence” and boasts one of the province’s most extensive and exciting wine cellars. He holds the Sommelier Diploma from the International Sommelier Guild and has been a restaurant professional for more than two decades. With a contagious enthusiasm for wine, Christopher understands the importance of promoting the Sommelier profession and working to support the Association.

204-487-8325

Sharon Steward

Treasurer

After obtaining a Red Seal Chef certification in 2002, it seemed natural that Sharon’s next step be towards the world of wine. She achieved her diploma from the ISG in 2005 while working in the kitchen of acclaimed Catch Restaurant in Calgary. She soon hung up her apron and moved to the front of the house, as both Sommelier and Restaurant Manager of Catch. Consulting for and developing lists for other restaurants and hotels in Calgary and Winnipeg fed the need to share the passion of food and wine with others. Since returning to Winnipeg in 2009, aside from being a mom to two busy little boys, Sharon is the Manitoba sales representative for Empson Canada. Her culinary itch is taken care of in the summer months, managing food service at Manitoba Pioneer Camp, and as a culinary instructor in the Red River College Continuing Education Program.

204-998-1670

Andrea Eby

Secretary, Events Coordinator

Always passionate about wine, and fascinated about its connection to culture, history and geography, Andrea found herself teased away from a career in the public school system into the adventures of teaching wine. Andrea has gained certification as a Certified Specialist of Wine from the Society of Wine Educators, as well as the Sommelier Diploma from the International Sommelier Guild, and is currently pursuing her Diploma through WSET.  Andrea has enhanced her knowledge by travelling to many wine regions and working a harvest in Tuscany.  Andrea is a member of the Education Faculty at Banville & Jones Wine Institute where she instructs sommelier classes, general wine appreciation programs and is a guest lecturer at Red River Community College.  In addition to her educational commitments, Andrea is also an assistant manager at Banville & Jones Wine Company.

204-948-9463