The New Roots of Winemaking

In partnership with The Roots Fund, Naked Wines announces 2020-21 recipients of the “Stay Rooted” Scholarship

Seven emerging winemakers have entered the building – and they’re fueled by your support.

Monica Palenzuela, Andrew Mihm, Luis Cendejas, Kathline Chery, Daren Clark, Samuel Dhiman and Robin Nguyen are the first award recipients of the Stay Rooted in California Scholarship Program.

A partnership between The Roots Fund and Naked Wines, Stay Rooted brings actionable change to the wine industry. The scholarship program has provided 7 up-and-coming winemakers with funding for hands-on learning and educational advancement – each has received funding to attend UC Davis’ Viticulture & Enology programs as part of Naked’s 5-year, $500,000 commitment to support new BIPOC voices and communities of color in wine.

Meet the Award Winners


“I’m focused solely on my schoolwork and the dream of becoming a winemaker,” said Andrew Mihm.

A second-generation Mexican-American raised in Napa Valley, Mihm is pursuing his Master’s in viticulture with a goal of paying it forward.

“New voices and different backgrounds should be the rule, not the exception.”

“Stay Rooted” Scholarship Recipient Monica Palenzuela

“I want to do my part in making a career in wine more accessible to minorities, and this goal is made easier when there are organizations with a vested interest in helping individuals succeed,” said Mihm.

Fellow Napa resident Luis Cendejas is also using the scholarship to continue his undergraduate degree in viticulture and enology. “The Roots Fund has made me realize there are more people like me trying to make it in the wine industry. It’s given people hope and support in a world so filled with doubt.”

The 2020-21 scholarship winners include several full-time students, educators, and wine entrepreneurs.


For more updates on these scholars and more programs, follow The Roots Fund and Naked Wines USA on Instagram.

About our partner: The Roots Fund was created to empower communities of color by providing resources and financial support through educational scholarships, wine education, mentorships and job placement. Naked has pledged a 5-year commitment to The Roots Fund and the advancement of the BIPOC community in wine.

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23 replies on “The New Roots of Winemaking”

Glad to be a part of an organization that provides a means to expand education to individuals that may never have even thought this could be a career path for them. Thank you Naked. Happy to see my Angel funds making a difference.

This is the resin I increased my donation , you guys are doing g a wonderful job glad to see these young people

Glad to hear about the wonderful work you’re doing , it’s encouraging to meet your winners ,keep up the good work

Bravo fantastic to you, cuz there is a possibility to support a new upcomming strong force, creative, innovative, diverse, ready to contribuite to the art of wine making , ❤

It’s great to see Naked stepping up once again to pragmatically and inspirationally address a problem. Perhaps current Naked winemakers will have opportunity to encourage, mentor, and cheer on these members of the next generation.

Congratulations One and All.
And this is exactly why I love being a part of Naked Wines. Not only do we support our Independent Winemakers, but now, we are supporting Future Winemakers as well.
And that is Very, Very Cool.
And I hope to see all of them as future Naked Wines Winemakers.
Cheers

Am I impressed? Yeah! Bigtime. These profiles are the best news I’ve read today. Congratulations yet again to Naked Wines for making the investment in a discipline, a life, a whole society.

After 25 years of working on turning public health data into information that public health professionals and others can use to understand what keeps us healthy – and how great the health disparities are among races and income groups – I’m proud to spend some of my retirement funds on the work nakedwines is doing to reduce disparities in your craft. Thank you!

This is just another reason I am so madly passionate about this company. I love the wine, yes, but I love the mission even more.
Thank you, Naked Wines, for maintaining that mission throughout the madly wonderful growth of the brand. I am so proud to say I am a wee teeny part of this grand bunch.

Ditto and quadruple YES! to all of the above! Naked Wines continues to impress me with their service to independent wine makers and now, hats off! and cheers to The Roots Fund!

Congratulations to all of the winners!! I am proud to be a part of this wonderful community- thank you Naked Wines for your work in this arena!

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