The CEO of Constellation Wines North America and a 3O-year wine industry veteran, died on New Year’s Day from brain cancer. He joined Constellation in 2OO1, and played a key role in the rapid growth of Constellation Brands and its North American wine business. Major acquisitions during his tenure included Robert Mondavi Corp., Vincor USA and Beam Wine Estates. Fernandez, who trained as a conductor at the Julliard School in New York, was named CEO of Constellation’s North American wine unit in 2OO7.
The CEO of the Beer Institute, Jeff Becker passed away in early January from cancer. In a statement from the Beer Institute Board of Directors, “Everybody who knew Jeff immediately liked him because he was a terrific guy and a true beer guy. Jeff was a tireless advocate and a true champion for all that is good about our great industry. Jeff embodied a spirit of optimism and collaboration – a spirit he brought to work every day right until the end. Those of us in the industry who worked with Jeff are better for it and his presence, commitment and friendship will be greatly missed. Jeff was, first and foremost, a friend, a husband and a father.”