2021 Annual General Meeting

Chairman Sarah Evans, Steve Finlan (CEO), and Pierre Mansour (Director of Wine) look back at the year, present resolutions ahead of voting, review the state of the wine world, and answer questions from members.

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The full video of The Wine Society’s Annual General Meeting, held online on 14th June, 2021.

Minutes from the 2021 AGM are available here.

Announcement: new Chairman and Deputy Chairman

Sarah Evans has retired as Chairman of The Wine Society, a position she has held since 2009. Alan Black has been selected as the new Chair. He brings great experience, a passion for wine, and a wholehearted belief in the mutual model and putting members first in all that we do.

Mike Thompson (Committee) and Steve Finlan (CEO) have written a letter thanking Sarah Evans for her service as Chairman, and an announcement of our new Chairman and Deputy Chairman.

Letters thanking Sarah Evans for her service as Chairman

As you may have read in this year's Annual Review, Sarah Evans is retiring as Chairman of The Wine Society, a position she has held since 2009.

Sarah was co-opted to the Committee in 1998 and elected to it in 1999 - a time before The Wine Society had a website - and leaves us winning industry awards for on line retailer of the year. All the core management statistics are similarly impressive. She recounts in this year's Chairman's Regort seeing, as a child, The Society's Claret and Cherry Brandy on the sideboard while staying with her grandparents, and we met her carrying a torch for mutuality, which has burned bright through these last 23 years. A Chair with grip and a touch of imperiousness, Sarah's forensic analysis, clear-sightedness and strong governance have all seen her through our challenges, not least this last Covid-19 period. Most of al I, it is Sarah's love of wine and her instinct to continuously explore to find new treasures which makes her one of us - a member of The Wine Society.

It has been a real pleasure working with Sarah since I joined The Society two years ago. She has brought a wealth of experience and insight, but more importantly a real passion for our Society, from vineyard to member, always making sure that we are creating the conditions for a fantastic member experience and ensuring that mutuality and the values of The Society are at the forefront of our discussions and decision making. Her passion for wine and ensuring that wine is always at the heart of what we do has been a real inspiration and The Society has continued to innovate and discover great wines for members to enjoy. How we work here at Stevenage and create a great employee experience for all our staff, particularly during the last year, has been a constant priority. She leaves us with The Society in terrific shape and able to embark on the next stage of our Journey.

Mike Thompson
Committee member Mike Thompson

It has been a real pleasure working with Sarah since I joined The Society two years ago. She has brought a wealth of experience and insight, but more importantly a real passion for our Society, from vineyard to member, always making sure that we are creating the conditions for a fantastic member experience and ensuring that mutuality and the values of The Society are at the forefront of our discussions and decision making. Her passion for wine and ensuring that wine is always at the heart of what we do has been a real inspiration and The Society has continued to innovate and discover great wines for members to enjoy. How we work here at Stevenage and create a great employee experience for all our staff, particularly during the last year, has been a constant priority. She leaves us with The Society in terrific shape and able to embark on the next stage of our Journey.

Alan Black has been elected as the new Chair of The Society. Many of you will know Alan, who joined the Committee, first as a co-optee, in 2009. He brings great experience from a career in international law and a real excitement for all aspects of wine. He believes wholeheartedly in the mutual model and is passionate about the effective governance of The Society and the importance of placing our members first in all that we do.

He is joined by Eleanor de Kanter as Deputy Chair. Eleanor joined the Committee, first as a co-optee, in 2018. Eleanor runs a digital strategy business and has experience in digital strategy, marketing and communications.

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