WASHINGTON, D.C., 03/30/2023 – Wine & Spirits Wholesalers of America (WSWA) today announced nine Wholesaler Movers & Shakers to be celebrated at Access LIVE in Orlando next week. WSWA’s Wholesaler Movers & Shakers Awards are presented to ambitious and driven rising leaders within the wholesaler tier who exhibit integrity and work ethic while making a positive and redefining impact on wholesalers or the beverage alcohol industry at large.
“We are so pleased to recognize these wholesaler leaders with this year’s Movers and Shakers Awards,” said WSWA President and CEO Francis Creighton. “They’re doing great work not only for their companies, but for suppliers and retailers as well, and I know the entire industry joins me in celebrating their accomplishments.”
WSWA’s 2023 Wholesaler Movers & Shakers:
- Julie Milroy, Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits
- Jessica Partington, Winebow
- Rissa Lawrence, Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits
- Jeremy Kruidenier, Wine & Spirits Distributors of Illinois
- Cheryl Durzy, Liberation Distribution, Inc. (LibDib)
- Eric Faber, Cutting Edge Selections
- Kevin Roberts, Breakthru Beverage Group
- Jenn Engel, Republic National Distributing
- Troy Clarke, Martignetti Companies
“It is a privilege to take my passion for talent, diversity and career development and put it to work with the support of SGWS, WSWA and all the council members. I encourage everyone to keep on giving what you’re passionate about, raise your hand and sponsor others along the way, especially talented & diverse women,” said Vice President, Supplier Development & Marketing at Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits Julie Milroy.
“Always remember where you came from, what inspired you, and who traveled the journey with you. These memories will drive you to aim for the moon and urge others to reach beyond the stars,” said Vice President, Wholesale Spirits, Sales at Winebow Jessica Partington
“ONWARDS: Driving innovative strategies that push the wine and spirits industry forward. UPWARDS: Assertively pushing the industry to new heights through diversity + equity + inclusion + belonging. ALWAYS: Staying true to my ethos of integrity, compassion, selflessness and excellence,” said Vice President, Strategy at Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits Rissa Lawrence.
“It’s an honor to receive this award alongside such esteemed colleagues. Every day I’m challenged and motivated by the dynamic moment in time we’re in as an industry. I know together we’ll continue to steward responsible public policy that delivers for all in the business,” said Executive Director of Wine & Spirits Distributors of Illinois Jeremy Kruidenier.
“I am beyond honored to be one of this year’s recipients for WSWA’s Movers and Shakers Award. LibDib is paving the way for all Makers to have immediate and efficient access to three-tier compliant distribution throughout the country. I am so proud to lead our team of technology and distribution experts as we continue to innovate and expand for years to come,” said CEO of Liberation Distribution, Inc. (LibDib) Cheryl Durzy.
“I am both humbled and honored to have been selected by the WSWA as a recipient of the first ever Movers and Shakers Award. To be recognized by an organization dedicated to working on behalf of wine and spirits wholesalers and distributors across the nation is exceptionally gratifying. The ethos of Cutting Edge Selections has always been to operate with integrity and creativity while working to improve ourselves and our industry for the customers, suppliers, and employees who are paramount to our success. My contributions to the industry are unquestionably a result of those relationships as well as a testament to all the exceptional people I have had the honor to work with and learn from in my career. In an industry where innovation and change continue to present new opportunities and challenges, to be honored for my efforts in making a positive and redefining impact in the alcoholic beverage sector is a source of tremendous pride for myself and my colleagues,” said COO/General Manager of Cutting Edge Selections Eric Faber.
“Wow! While I am incredibly honored by this, it’s truly a team recognition. At Breakthru, we have the hardest working, most capable team and this award is really for all of us. From top to bottom, all of our associates share a relentless focus on serving our supplier and customer partners, leading with inclusivity and leveraging our ever-growing capabilities and resources to meet our stakeholder needs. It’s been an incredible year for all of us, but I can assure you this is only the beginning. We remain deeply committed to providing the highest level of service while we pursue expansion across our company, from our stellar portfolio offerings to deepening our impact in new and existing markets. It’s Breakthru Beverage who is the real mover and shaker, I’m just privileged to be a part of it,” said Executive Vice President, Supplier Business Development at Breakthru Beverage Group Kevin Roberts.
“I am honored to be selected for WSWA’s Wholesaler Movers & Shakers Award and be recognized for my contributions to the industry. It is a privilege to work in beverage alcohol and I couldn’t do it without the support of my family, as well as great leaders, advocates, and the team members I’ve been fortunate to work with. I am truly humbled by this honor,” said Chief Commercial Sales Officer of Republic National Distributing Jenn Engel.
“I am truly honored to be awarded this year, the Wholesalers Movers and Shakers award. We all work so hard and when you take time to recognize people the feeling it has is incredible. I am sure there are so many amazing leaders out there who are deserving, and to be chosen bears an immense amount of gratitude. Since my first year being involved at WSWA every single person I have worked with has been nothing but amazing. I feel so lucky to be part of this action packed event each year and grateful for all you do all year long for everyone in our industry,” said Director of Mixology & Spirit Education at Martignetti Companies Troy Clarke.
About Wine & Spirits Wholesalers of America
WSWA is the national trade association representing the distribution tier of the wine and spirits industry, dedicated to advancing the interests and independence of distributors and brokers of wine and spirits. Founded in 1943, WSWA has more than 380 member companies in 50 states and the District of Columbia, and its members distribute more than 80 percent of all wine and spirits sold at wholesale in the United States.
To learn more, please visit www.wswa.org or connect with us on Facebook or Twitter.