Our seminars are as delicious as educational, and often explore somewhat controversial topics of the day. Our moderators are not only knowledgeable and industry experts, but skilled at keeping our panelists and audience on track and on time!
Donald P. Kinnan, CSS, CWE | Secretary, Society of Wine Educators
For 30 years, Don Kinnan has been active in the fine wine trade, both on a business and personal level. Having traveled frequently to the wine regions of Europe, South America, New Zealand and California, the depth of his knowledge has been enhanced by his own experience.
Kinnan joined Kobrand Corporation, a family-owned wine importer and marketing company, in 1985 covering the Washington, DC, Virginia and West Virginia areas. In 1992, he was promoted to Director of Education and was responsible for Educational Services nationwide. For the next 20 years, he conducted over 60 seminars, annually, for distributor sales forces, trade groups, and consumers.
Kinnan’s passion for wine is evidenced by his involvement in numerous professional organizations. He has been cited by the U. S. Government for his role as founder of the Society for American Wines in Canada. He founded and acted as President of the Decanter Club in Washington, DC, and frequently presents to groups such as the Society of Wine Educators, where he holds that organization’s highest credential, CWE (Certified Wine Educator). He is also a member of the society’s executive committee and board of directors. In 2012, Kinnan will be the lead instructor in the French Wine Society’s new Master Burgundy Certificate program.
Kinnan received his undergraduate degree from Penn State University and his masters from Johns Hopkins. He had a long and distinguished military career in the US Army, from which he retired with the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. While in the Army, Kinnan graduated from the Defense Department’s Language Institute for French, the Command and General Staff College, and served as an instructor and, subsequently, as chief of the South East Asian Studies Section at the US Army Intelligence School.
Matt Kettmann is senior editor of The Santa Barbara Independent, where he's covered the emergence of Santa Barbara wine country alongside most every other topic since 1999, and a contributing editor for Wine Enthusiast Magazine, reviewing the wines and covering the culture of California's Central and South Coasts. He's also written about wine, food, and other topics for the New York Times (since 2011), Time Magazine (since 2004), Smithsonian (since 2007), Sunset (2006-2012), Wine Spectator (2005-2013), and other magazines. He co-founded the New Noise Santa Barbara Music Conference and Festival in 2009 (which just celebrated its sixth annual event in October), co-wrote a feature-length nature documentary about California condors, and is making four different barrels of his own wine right now.