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Today is the final day of our Women’s History Month series! We have featured on our social media some amazing women representing the local food & beverage industry every day throughout the month of March.

It has been an enjoyable and fulfilling experience to feature so many local women in our industry. We appreciate all the wonderful comments and feedback we’ve received throughout the month, and are feeling proud to have such a strong female representation in local hospitality community.

Today, we proudly close out the series by featuring the strong, smart and engaged women of the Wine & Food Foundation Board of Directors! We are proud to report that our Board is comprised of 47% women and growing!

Our female Directors are listed below. And don’t forget to check out our social media channels for ALL the strong, groundbreaking women we have featured for Women’s History Month.

Click the arrow below their names to learn more about these outstanding women.

Meghan Caiazzo

Meghan Caiazzo is co-founder of Victory Wine Group; a wine and spirits distributor in Texas that opened in March 2015. She is a also a partner at Palomar Beverage Company, an Import and Management Services firm along with other distributors in FL, MN and AZ. Meghan, a mother of two does not believe in balance between entrepreneurship and motherhood, instead she embraces the chaos and hopes to inspire others to realize that it’s possible to be successful with both their personal and their work life if they embrace both with enthusiasm, determination and grace.

Cristin Moxy Castro

Cristin “Moxy” Castro currently serves as Central Region Sales Director and Export Manager for Demeine Estates, the sales & marketing company of Heitz, Ink Grade, Brendel, Burgess and Legras & Haas. Previous to this role, she started a Beverage Consulting firm, Commonwealth Beverage & Brand, LLC, which partnered with small to medium-sized beverage companies to start up and scale their businesses. And she also led a team of 18 when she served as Southern Glazers’ Central Texas Regional Sales Director of Fine Wine.

Moxy is a Certified Sommelier, a member of the Italian Sommelier Association, holds a WSET II Certificate with distinction and is an Italian Wine Professional with Honors. She earned a Master's Degree in Fine Food and Beverage Business in Milan, Italy and worked with Slowfood University while she was abroad.

Secretary, Chair, Relationship Development Committee

Soncy Chin

Soncy Chin, DAOU Family Estates Field Sales Manager, has spent almost two decades working in wine sales. Starting in the wine business with a Houston retailer while in college to working for SGWS, RNDC, and Favorite Brands, Soncy now focuses her professional time on DAOU Family Estates and the Wine & Food Foundation as a Board Member, Secretary, and Committee Chair. She holds a WSET Advanced Level III Certification and finds great joy in mentoring folks new to the industry.

Joelle Cousins

Joelle Cousins is a native Austinite, UT grad, and award winning Sommelier currently working as retail Chain Account Manager for RNDC. Her career in the wine industry has led her through different environments as a Sommelier and manager, from restaurants to supply and now distribution. She has a passion for the world of wine and co-founded the ATX Somms organization dedicated to education and mentorship for the local professional community in Austin.

Lauren Holbrook

Lauren Holbrook works in the D&E Group (Domaines & Estates) for Southern Glazer's Wine & Spirits. Her love for wine was born through her work in the restaurant/hospitality industry. She became a Certified Sommelier while working with the wine program at the Paggi House, and then moved to distribution (SGWS) in 2015.

Holly Noel

After a 7 year career in the fashion industry in New York City, Holly and her husband moved to Austin, TX to start a family. For the last seven years she has worked in the Eanes community to advocate for strong public schools and raise money for additional teaching positions within the Eanes school district. Holly joined the WFF Board because it brings together her love of wine, food, and philanthropy.

Brooke Paup

"Brooke Paup was appointed to the Texas Water Development Board by Governor Greg Abbott on February 22, 2018, and reappointed to a new term on February 6, 2019. Prior to her appointment, Paup served as the director of legislative affairs for the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts where she led a team of legislative professionals to address statutory tax reforms.

Paup has 15 years of state government experience, including having served as the deputy division chief of intergovernmental relations and former special assistant for policy and research for the Office of the Attorney General. In addition to serving on the WFF Board of Directors, Brook is a member of the State Bar of Texas, Symphony League, and Doss PTA. She lives in Austin with her husband, Spivey, and their two children, Henry and Heidi."

President Elect, Chair, Governance & Nominations Committee

Amber Pearce

"Amber Pearce is the Director of US Public Affairs and State Government Relations for Pfizer Inc. covering Texas, New Mexico and Oklahoma. She began her career serving at the Texas State Capitol as a legislative staff member, despite working a brief stint as a children’s ski instructor in Winter Park, Colorado.

In addition to the WFF Board, Amber currently holds officer positions with the Texas Association of Manufacturers and the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers Association Task Force in Texas.

An active enthusiast involved in skiing running, water sports and sand volleyball, she spends much of her spare time traveling to new spots around the world and US in search of the best sunset photo, glass of wine, and grilled octopus.

Linda Poole

Linda Poole has been in the hospitality industry for more than 30 years, and is a well-known industry hotelier. She currently serves as the Director of Catering for the renowned JW Marriott hotel, and has been in that role since the hotel opened in 2014. Prior to that, Linda served as Director of Catering for the Driskill Hotel and the Renaissance Austin Hotel.

Mari Robinson

Mari Robinson serves as the Director of Telehealth at the University of Texas Medical Branch. Mari's role is to assist The University of Texas System in leveraging its world-class Health Science Centers and Medical Schools to create a model for coordinated care delivery through a Virtual Health Network (UT-VHN).
Chair, Auction Committee

Maura Sharp

Maura Sharp is Vice President and Deputy General Counsel for Informatica, a global enterprise data company, where she is responsible for employment and compliance matters worldwide. She’s also the co-owner of Sharp Family Vineyards in the Texas Davis Mountains AVA. Maura is growing Cabernet Sauvignon in uncharted territory — high elevation, in volcanic soil, on the slopes of Blue Mountain — and working on plans for a future estate winery.

Stephanie Simpson

Stephanie is the Director of State Government Relations at Sanofi US where she manages legislative affairs for a six state regions and serves on the leadership team for the inclusion and diversity employee resource group. Stephanie joined the Wine & Food Foundation Board in 2014, and served as the first woman president of the Board from 2017-2019. Stephanie has lived in Austin for nearly 15 years, and has traveled to South Africa, Spain, and New Zealand all in the name of adventure and finding the perfect glass of wine. Aside from wine, Stephanie is a exercise enthusiast and has been known to take a few meetings on the Peloton.

Ellen Troxclair

Kristin Waddington

Kristin Waddington is Co-Founder & Creative Partner of The Label Collective, an independent brand strategy and creative agency in Austin, Texas. Current clients include Bazaarvoice, Personify, The Regis Company, Capital Metro, Wine & Food Foundation, and more. Outside of The Label Collective, she serves on the Advisory Board of Austin Design Week as a Design and Brand Liaison. Her company has been the Creative Sponsor for the Wine & Food Foundation since 2014, and was responsible for their recent brand and website refresh. She has served on the WFF Board of Directors since 2016.