During this year, I wanted to give our Diaz Communications Innovator of the Year Award to someone very deserving, which has now happened.

Before I could even announce it, though, a press release came out with Rebecca Hopkins’ name as being a finalist in another Innovator of the Year Award.  Beck, as she likes to call herself, is an executive with Folio Fine Wine Partners. So, for the time being, I just let it go… knowing I’d double back around at some point. The time is now, and was prompted by Beryl Ryan RN, of TapWithin, a healer. (Beryl Ryan’s story will be “live,” on this coming Wednesday… It’s a continuation of healthy living.)

[PHOTO: From A Balanced Glass website, Rebecca is on the left, Cathy Huyghe is on the right]

To date, our award has gone to those in the digital marketing fields. They’ve been really easy to spot, as innovators. As I’ve predicted all along, the marketing grid for acceptance of something as ingenious as they’ve launched, has been a very slow process. Most of us aren’t even in the “Keeping up with the Jones” stage, yet.

This innovation is off the digital marketing grid a bit more than it has been in the past, as it’s completely centered on the health and wellness, for those who work within the wine industry… All of us, from tasting room personnel, to those who are CEOs; and to those who are in adjunct professions, like mine… a freelance publicist.

Why Rebecca Hopkins was considered as the best of the best, for these complicated times… She (founder) and Cathy Huyghe, co-founder, writer, and a proprietor with Enolytics, (who has already been awarded the DC Innovator of the Year Award in 2016) have started a movement within the wine industry that’s so exciting, critical, and growing much faster than even I could imagine.

From A Balanced Glass, their credo:

Why A Balanced Glass?

We believe that every professional who works with, or around alcohol, deserves to have the knowledge, tools and resources to manage their personal wellness for long-term career success.

25+ years as a wine professional has taught me that working with wine can present physical and mental health challenges faced by few other professions.

A Balanced Glass (ABG) is a web forum dedicated to supporting the health and wellness for wine professionals around the world. Our focus is to provide guidance, access to networks and connections within beverage alcohol.

[PHOTO: Rebecca Hopkins]

Some have taught our children to take responsibility seriously… Now, they’ve taken those lessons and entered the wine business. They’re thinking about it very differently, too. When they go on the road, for instance, they avoid the after parties, the ‘ole “Code of the Road” BS (which freaked me out, when I heard about it). And, not having someone in the trade come to their rooms anymore to take away the left over wine (because these women can’t take it with them, flying, etc.). Then, only to have the guy arrive at the room to get the wine and begin to undress (that was funny, not funny).

Nope, not these emerging leaders. They’re planted in solid ground.

[PHOTO: Cathy Huyghe]

Still, the ground’s got a fault line, so they’re having empowerment conferences, to figure it all out. A large number of them are publicly chanting what we chanted privately years ago, engaging in yogic practices we did on our own, meditating quietly and wondering if they can keep notes for those fabulous epiphanies when they emerge, having children their own way ~ or not having them, and reemerging into the job market as soon as the last one’s in kindergarten. It’s great to watch them really working hard at that balance and begin to really bloom. This is why Rebecca Hopkins, of A Balanced Glass, epitomizes what Jose Diaz and I see as the best recipient for our 2019 Diaz Communications Innovator of the Year Award. She finds the time to self-nurture and also considers everyone else in the process.

She’s found her groove and we’ve found someone very worthy of recognition, Rebecca (Beck) Hopkins. Congratulations, Beck!