On April 30, wine industry pioneer and J. Lohr Vineyards & Wines Founder and President Jerry Lohr was honored by the New York Institute of Technology (NYIT) with its Professional Excellence in Oenology award. The award was presented by NYIT President Edward Guiliano and Richard Elia of Quarterly Review of Wines at the NYIT’s Gold Coast Classic Professional Excellence Awards. The event was a fundraiser held at the Jumeirah Essex House in New York City in support of student scholarships and educational programs at NYIT.
“I am deeply honored to receive this award for J. Lohr’s excellence in winemaking, and I am proud that this recognition comes within the context of supporting academic advancement,” said Jerry Lohr. “This award is also an acknowledgement of the hard work of many people, individuals like our longtime winemaker Jeff Meier, and the numerous dedicated staff I’ve been fortunate to work alongside in our vineyards and wineries over the past four decades.”
Jerry Lohr graduated from South Dakota State University with a degree in civil engineering in 1958, and is actively involved to this day in major capital and fundraising campaigns for his alma mater, including an eponymous engineering building. He received an M.S. from Stanford in 1959, and completed his coursework for a Ph.D. in civil engineering in 1961. As an Air Force captain, Lohr was posted as a research scientist at the NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, from 1961 to 1964. Returning to civilian life, he opened a land development and custom home building business, but his passion for farming and an appreciation of wine led him to found J. Lohr Vineyards & Wines in 1972.
Since then, Lohr has established J. Lohr as one of North America’s most successful wineries, with an acclaimed 3,896-acre estate program spanning Paso Robles, Monterey County and the St. Helena appellation of Napa Valley. In addition to being recognized for his vast knowledge of viticulture and oenology, Lohr is widely respected for his vision and leadership in championing California’s Central Coast, as well as his widespread support of sustainability initiatives.
His efforts on behalf of the entire wine industry have included posts as director and chair of the Wine Institute and co-founder of Monterey Wine Country (now Monterey County Vintners & Growers’ Association). He is one of the four founding members of Wine Vision, anindustry-wide strategic effort with the goal of integrating American wines into the fabric of American culture, while making them the preeminent supplier to the global wine marketplace.Jerry Lohr was also the founding chair of the National Grape and Wine Initiative (NGWI), a coalition representing grape growers, wineries and academic institutions committed to improving the industry. In 2007, UC Davis honored Lohr with its Award of Distinction, and in 2008 he was named Wine Industry Person of the Year by the Paso Robles Wine Country Alliance. Lohr is currently on the Board of Visitors and Fellows at UC Davis, and has been an instrumental leader in the development of the campus’ research and teaching winery, which is designed to achieve LEED-Platinum certification, and will be unveiled in late 2010.
“We are thrilled to recognize Jerry Lohr for his leadership in the wine industry, and J. Lohr for its continued excellence in producing outstanding wines,” said NYIT President Edward Guiliano. “Jerry is a pioneer and a visionary who has left an indelible mark on the evolution of California’s Central Coast as one of the world’s great wine regions.”
New York Institute of Technology (NYIT) offers undergraduate, graduate, and professional degrees in more than 90 fields of study, including architecture and interior design; arts and sciences; education; engineering and computing sciences; health professions; management; and osteopathic medicine. A non-profit independent, private institution of higher education, NYIT has more than 15,000 students attending campuses on Long Island and Manhattan, online, and at its global campuses. For more than 50 years, NYIT has been guided by its mission to provide career-oriented professional education, offer access to opportunity to all qualified students, and support applications-oriented research that benefits the larger world. To date, 81,500 students have graduated from NYIT. For more information, visit www.nyit.edu.
J. Lohr Vineyards & Wines
J. Lohr Vineyards & Wines was founded in 1972 by Jerry Lohr, who was raised on a South Dakota farm, and has spent six decades actively farming—experience that informs J. Lohr’s respect for the land and focus on sustainability. J. Lohr Vineyards & Wines crafts a full line of internationally recognized wines from its 3,896 acres of estate vineyards in Paso Robles, Monterey County, and the Napa Valley. Offering an expressive range of styles, J. Lohr produces four tiers of signature wines: J. Lohr Estates, J. Lohr Vineyard Series, J. Lohr Cuvée Series and J. Lohr Gesture. J. Lohr also produces an array of flavorful wines under its Cypress Vineyards, ARIEL (non-alcoholic) and Painter Bridge labels.