/Presidential Council
Presidential Council2019-06-25T11:16:18+01:00

Presidential Council


Greg Hodson

Greg Hodson is Chief Technical Regulatory Liaison for E. & J. Gallo Winery. He has a Bachelor’s in Biochemistry and a Doctorate in Food Chemistry. After working as an analytical chemist in the dairy industry, he spent 12 years working with the UK Government on technical aspects of food legislation. During this time, he conducted negotiations for the UK in the European Union, Codex Alimentarius, the United Nations, and the International Organisation of Vine and Wine. Greg moved to Gallo in 1997 and has held a wide variety of positions in winery research management, regulatory affairs, and compliance. He is currently responsible for technical regulatory affairs issues in connection with trade in wine, both in the United States and internationally. He is a member of the U.S. industry delegation to both the World Wine Trade Group and the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation’s Wine Regulatory Forum and for 16 years was Chair of the California Wine Institute’s Technical Advisory Committee. In addition, Greg serves as the President of FIVS.


Michael Lurie

Michael Lurie is the Senior Vice President, Brand Strategy of Constellation Brands. Beginning with the company in 2005, he has served in a variety of different roles during Constellation Brands’ remarkable evolution to becoming a leading international wine, spirits, and beer producer. An attorney by vocation, since the beginning of 2016, Michael has been based in Europe (now Zug, Switzerland) overseeing Constellation’s brand strategy initiatives for various premium products across the beer, wine, and spirits spectrum. Prior to this role, Michael Lurie served as General Counsel to Constellation’s beer business, based in Chicago, USA. Throughout his tenure, he has handled a wide range of Constellation’s wine, spirits, and beer initiatives, including in both the US and international acquisition and distribution realms, and he has had extensive involvement with Constellation’s external affairs and corporate social responsibility activities. Earlier in his career, Mr. Lurie was a partner at a major commercial law firm in Chicago, and also served a two-year stint in Illinois state government. He is a graduate of Stanford University and the University of San Diego School of Law.

Ignacio Sánchez Recarte

Dr. Ignacio Sánchez Recarte was appointed Secretary General of Comité Européen des Entreprises Vins in June 2015, after serving for four years as spiritsEUROPE’s Director for Internal Market & Sustainability, where he monitored spirit drinks and food policy, market access and fiscal discrimination within the EU, environment issues, and illicit trade practices. Prior to that position, Ignacio Sánchez worked for the Spanish wine group Bodegas Chivite as the Director of Environment Affairs and Innovation, and before that for the International Organisation of Vine and Wine where he was first the Head of the Viticulture Unit (2004-2007) and later the Head of the Economy and Law Unit (2007-2011). From 2001 to 2004, he was a researcher in the Food Technology Department of the Public University of Navarra. Mr. Sánchez Recarte holds both an Agronomic Engineer degree (Public University of Navarra) and a PhD in Engineering (University of Lleida). A Spanish citizen, he is fluent in Spanish, English, French, and Italian. Since 2017, he serves as a co-Chair of the FIVS Economic Sustainability Working Group.

Frithjof Nicolaysen

Frithjof Nicolaysen is the Vice-President, Corporate Affairs and Quality Control at Arcus-Gruppen and a Board Member of VBF, the Norwegian Trade Association for Wines and Spirits. He also served as the president of the European Federation of Wine & Spirits Importers and Distributors. Graduated from the University of Tromsø in 1977 with a degree in microbiology, he began his career as a research scientist and worked for the Norwegian Food Control Authority before joining the Norwegian State Monopoly of Wine and Spirits in 1983 as its Quality Director. Mr. Nicolaysen joined the ArcusGruppen first as its Quality Director in 1995 and later as the chief buyer of wines and spirits. He was awarded “Le Mérite de l’Organisation Mondiale de la Vigne et du Vin” in 2008.


Michel-Laurent Pinat

Michel-Laurent Pinat is a senior consultant at Wine-Int’, a Member of the French Association for Bottlers and Distributors of which he is the legal secretary general. He received his MBA from Paris-Dauphine 1971 and studied law and economics at Paris IX-Nanterre University. Michel-Laurent Pinat served as Director General of the Groupe Compagnons Gourmets, specialists in wine and spirits from 1972 until 1983, at which time this group became a subsidiary of Pernod Ricard. Since that time, he served as the wine specialist for that group serving first in Burgundy, then later in Paris as the purchasing manager for Languedoc, the Rhone and Loire Valleys and finally for Bordeaux where he was in charge of Cruse and Alexis Lichine’s business until it merged with Castel in 1992. Affiliated with the Champagne House Alain Thienot, Mr. Pinat was in charge of the Woltner Company in Bordeaux where he developed a large business in the United States focused on the sale of vintage wines and Champagne under the Marie Stuart brand. That company was sold in 2003 to the Ballande Group.

Assistant Treasurer

Kurt Moore

Kurt Moore is the CEO of the South African Liquor Brandowners’ Association, which represents the manufacturers and distributors of alcohol beverages in South Africa. Before this appointment, he was at Distell, Ltd. for 16 years. Mr. Moore has a legal background, receiving a Bachelor of Laws and Master of Laws before working as a Legal Advisor for Stellenbosch Farmers’ Winery Ltd.


Bruno Kessler

Bruno Kessler is the chief winemaker for INVIVO WINE; he is also the President of the French Association for Bottlers and Distributors and the Vice-President of the organisation of ANIVIN de France. Mr. Kessler also spent 16 years working as chief buyer and chief winemaker for Grands Chais de France. As an oenologist, he serves as an expert on oenological matters for the Comité Européen des Entreprises Vins.

Assistant Secretary

Jeffrey Clarke

Jeffrey Clarke was appointed General Manager Advocacy and General Counsel of New Zealand Winegrowers in 2014. The New Zealand Winegrowers is the unified industry body representing the interests of New Zealand’s grape growers and winemakers. He helps ensure that growers and wineries are able to competitively produce, market, and sell their wines around the world. His role covers international trade, government relations, regulations, standards, intellectual property, and provision of information to members. Before moving into the world of wine, Mr. Clarke spent over 20 years working as a lawyer and an advocate for top firms in New Zealand, New York, and London, managing the legal department of a major state-owned energy company and representing New Zealand in Paris at the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development and at the International Energy Agency.

Member Emeritus

Joe Lynch

Joe Lynch is a food and dairy scientist. He commenced his career at R. & J. Emmet & Co. in 1981 working in production, product development, and sales and marketing before becoming Managing Director in 1986. He led the company through its growth by acquisition and oversaw the listing of the company on the Dublin stock exchange in 1987. In 1991, he negotiated the sale of the business to R. & A. Bailey, a division of Diageo, before co-founding First Ireland Spirits Co. in 1994, where he now serves as Senior Director and consultant to the business. Mr. Lynch has been involved with numerous trade associations and advisory bodies, serving as president of the Irish Exporters Association, chairman of the Irish Spirits Association, a member of the Irish Food Board’s Brand Forum Steering Committee, and as the current chair of the Irish Cream Liqueur Producers Association.