The Washington Wine Institute hired a new executive director to manage policy and regulatory issues facing Washington winery owners. Josh McDonald, with background in legislative affairs and trade association work, began his new role in early January.
McDonald was the state and local government affairs manager for the Washington Restaurant Association, headquartered in Olympia, before joining the Wine Institute. He was responsible for building the association’s local government program and managing the group’s interests on issues including tourism, food safety, environment, immigration, taxation, and regulation.
Wine Institute President Marty Clubb of L’Ecole No. 41 winery in Walla Walla, said in a news release that it was time to build on the organization’s past legislative and regulatory successes in Olympia with a full-time executive director who can provide critical outreach to members.
“Josh has the association background, organizational development skills, and political experience that will help take the Wine Institute to the next level so wineries can realize even more value for their membership,” stated Clubb.
The Wine Institute has been the voice for legislative and regulatory advocacy for Washington wineries for more than 25 years. Washington is the second largest wine producing state and has more than 800 bonded wineries.
Melissa Hansen is the research program director for the Washington Wine Commission. Hansen previously was an associate editor at Good Fruit Grower from 1996 through 2015.
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