Steve Lohr elected chairman of California Wine Institute

Steve Lohr
Steve Lohr

J. Lohr Vineyards Chairman and CEO Steve Lohr has been elected board chairman of the Wine Institute for the 2017-2018 fiscal year.

In the role, he’ll represent nearly 1,000 California wineries and related businesses—accounting for 95 percent of the state’s wine production and 85 percent nationwide—for the public policy advocacy group.

Referring to the group at the “go-to voice of the California wine industry,” Lohr said he plans to work with the institute’s staff and board on core issues facing the industry. Among them: “finding solutions to labor and immigration challenges and promoting sustainable winegrowing practices that will continue to make our industry thrive for years to come.”

Lohr has been involved in the wine industry since age 10, when he helped his father, J. Lohr founder Jerry Lohr, plant his first vineyards in Arroyo Seco. Now executive vice president and chief operating officer of the San Jose and Paso Robles-based winery, he oversees management and development of the family’s 3,700 acres of estate vineyards.

Lohr is also chairman of the California Sustainable Winegrowing Alliance and has served three terms as chair of the Paso Robles Wine Country Alliance.

Gary Ebele of Eberle Winery and Gretchen Roddick of Hope Family Wines, both in Paso Robles, were elected as directors of the institute’s Central Coast district, along with two other representatives from Santa Barbara County.

Sally Buffalo writes about wine, beer and spirits. Reach her at or on Twitter or Instagram @sallybuffalo.

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