Tedd Wildman is busy loading grapes during harvest.
It would be easier to list the industry groups that Prosser, Washington’s Tedd Wildman has not been actively involved with than to list the ones he has chaired or served as an officer or board member.
In addition to serving as chair of the Washington Association of Wine Grape Growers and the Washington State Commission on Pesticide Registration, he spent four years on the board of the Washington Wine Commission, chaired for many years the research-focused Wine Advisory Board, and was involved in revitalizing the grape foundation block and creating the Northwest Grape Foundation Service. He chaired the plant material selection committee for the foundation service, which is managed by Washington State University.
On the national level, he helped get the National Grape Clean Plant Network concept up and running, serving on its board until last summer. He is also a regional representative for the National Grape and Wine Initiative, a nationwide coalition of grape interests working to fund industry needs and collaborate on research.
Wildman he is now stepping back from his many leadership positions to spend more time at home and in the vineyard.
He and his wife, Anke, who is busy as winemaker for the Yakima Valley winery Steppe Cellars, have three teenagers—the oldest playing football for the state-ranked Prosser High School team.
“My involvement in the industry has been one of the most important things in my life,” he said. “But my family is still number one, and I have missed some things.”
The best way to make sure that other people step up and be active is to get out of the way, Wildman said.
All organizations need new blood, ideas, and energy to keep from becoming stagnant. “There’s a whole crop of young, bright, well-educated, and willing growers and winemakers out there.”