Washington Wine Foundation announces scholarship recipients

by Staff Report
| June 26, 2020 1:00 AM

CASHMERE — The Washington Wine Foundation has awarded $48,000 in scholarships to students studying viticulture and enology. The scholarship money came from the Walter J. Clore Scholarship, Foundation Fund Scholarship, Horse Heaven Hills Wine Growers Scholarship and George and Susan Carter Scholarship funds.

Thirteen students received the scholarship funds.

Noah Nilson is graduating this spring with a degree in biology from Washington State University. He will be working on his master’s degree at the Washington State University Plant Pathology department with Dr. Naidu Rayapati. Nilson will be focusing on the molecular biology of grapevine leafroll-associated viruses.

Calie Judkins, of Prosser, is majoring in wine and beverage business management and minoring in viticulture and enology at Washington State University. She has close family ties to the Washington wine industry.

Trinity Willsey, of Wapato, grew up and has worked in her family’s vineyard. She plans to start studying biochemistry at Washington State University this fall. Willsey hopes to open her own winery.

Leyla Gonzalez, a senior at Bickleton High School, will be attending Yakima Valley College and getting her associate’s degree in vineyard technology. Once completed, she hopes to transfer to the viticulture and enology program at Washington State University.

Samantha Mallery is pursuing an associate’s degree from Yakima Valley College in winery and vineyard technology. She is president of the agribusiness and wine club at Yakima Valley College. Mallery is also an enologist at the Owen Roe Winery.

Emily Wolff is a student in the Walla Walla Community College enology and viticulture program. She is also a tasting room associate and vineyard intern at College Cellars. Wolff hopes to one day own a small winery in the Columbia Gorge.

Layton Ashmore is researching aroma and flavor chemistry as a graduate student at Washington State University. He is working on smoke exposure projects with Dr. Tom Collins. Ashmore received the National Association County Agricultural Agents (NACAA) award for extension research in 2019.

Arunabha Mitra, of Kolkata, India, is a plant pathology Ph.D. candidate at Washington State University (IAREC) in Prosser. His research projects are focused on grapevine leafroll disease with emphasis on genetic diversity and molecular biology of grapevine leafroll-associated viruses. Mitra aims to generate high-quality research-based knowledge to help Washington wine take the next step toward becoming a major player in the global wine market.

Margaret McCoy is a horticultural Ph.D. candidate at Washington State University. She is researching sprayer technologies and how to improve viticultural management practices.

Bernadette Gagnier will soon be a graduate student at Washington State University. She will be studying anaerobic soils disinfestation on preplant management of plant-parasitic nematodes in new wine grape vineyards. Gaginer has interned at Yakima, Columbia Valley, Horse Heaven Hills, Walla Walla and Red Mountain AVAs. She has also spent time in the Netherlands studying that country’s northernmost vineyards.

Alexa McDaniel is a Washington State University graduate student. She completed her undergraduate degree at the Oregon State University-Hermiston Research and Extension Center. She has worked at the Horse Heaven Hills Estate Winery as a tasting room manager.

Baily Weisinger is pursuing an associate’s degree at Walla Walla Community College. She has worked at Airfield Estates in Sunnyside and at Walla Walla Vintners. Weisinger hopes to travel abroad to expand her wine knowledge and techniques.

Charles (C.J.) Augustine is working toward an associate’s degree at Walla Walla Community College. He is part of the barbera wine making project at College Cellars. Augustine works at Brook and Bull Cellars in Walla Walla.

To learn more about the scholarship program available through the Washington Wine Foundation, visit washingtonwinefoundation.org.