Two new members join the Department of Viticulture & Enology Executive Leadership Board

We are excited to announce that two new members were recently elected to the Executive Leadership Board (ELB) of the Department of Viticulture and Enology at UC Davis. 

Maryam Ahmed

Maryam Ahmed, Owner, Maryam and Company
Maryam is a social impact entrepreneur, speaker, writer, and community builder in the world of food and wine. Maryam + Company, a certified B Corporation, designs brand extension programs and educational experiences for purpose-driven clients that want to grow their business, increase engagement, and deepen their impact while celebrating food and wine. Maryam has experience in distribution, dining, enology and viticulture, and events. Most often, her work takes place at the intersection of chefs, sommeliers, activists, sustainability experts, creatives, media, and visionary organizations. Maryam recently received the Impact Award from the Wine & Culture Festival, was named a Wine Enthusiast Future 40 Tastemaker in 2022, has been listed as one of the Imbibe 75, and nominated for the Social Visionary Wine Star Award in 2022.


John Sutton

John Sutton, Chief Executive Officer of The Wine Group
John Sutton has served as a director of The Wine Group (TWG) since 2013. TWG is a California-based, private, management-owned wine company. With annual sales of approximately $1 billion and annual shipments of over 45 million cases worldwide, TWG is the second largest wine producer by volume in the United States and the third largest wine producer by volume in the world.

Mr. Sutton joined TWG in 2007 as General Counsel, became Chief Financial Officer in 2015 and was named Chief Executive Officer in 2022. Prior to joining TWG, Mr. Sutton worked as an attorney at Howard, Rice, Nemerovski, Canady, Falk & Rabkin (now known as Arnold & Porter), where he served as outside counsel to TWG. Mr. Sutton also worked as an attorney at K&L Gates, in San Francisco. While in private practice, he advised start-up and mature companies in connection with venture capital financings, private and public equity and debt securities offerings, merger and acquisition transactions, commercial credit and finance transactions, and secured transactions.

From 1994-1997, Mr. Sutton worked in the White House under President Clinton, serving first as Special Assistant to the White House Deputy Chief of Staff, and then as Special Assistant to the Counselor to the President.

Mr. Sutton is past Chairman of the Board of Wine Institute, the industry’s leading trade association that represents over 1,000 California wineries.

The Executive Leadership Board (ELB) is an important and influential advisory group for the UC Davis Department of Viticulture and Enology. Composed of invited industry leaders, educators, wine appreciators and selected friends and colleagues, ELB members lend expert counsel and assistance to the Department in setting and accomplishing its long-range strategic goals.