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Monday, May 22

7:30AM: Reflective Journaling

Hosted offsite: Dimension Gallery Sculpture Park

Address: 950 Springdale Rd, Austin, TX 78702 (this is directly across the street from the conference venue)

Led by Akeel Bernard and Melissa Mel of Melanin Minds

Join us at the Sculpture morning meet-up centered around mindfulness, journaling, self-reflection, and radical self-love. In this meet-up, we'll take time to slow down, connect with nature, and tune into ourselves. We'll guide you through a series of mindfulness practices and journaling prompts to help you reflect on your journey and cultivate self-compassion. With the hope , you will leave with a renewed sense of clarity, self-awareness, and a deeper appreciation for the beauty around you. Come nourish your mind, body, and soul in this peaceful lakeside setting and embrace the power of radical self-love.


9:00AM: Group Breakfast / Check-In

Assortment of breakfast tacos and fruit


10:00AM:  Call to Attention / Conference Kick Off

Emcee: Miguel de Leon

Welcome Address (House Rules and Announcements)

Rania Zayyat & Rachel Adams


10:15AM: Intentionality Check-In with Melanin Minds

LaGina R. Harris and Melissa Mel


Rest and Reset Wellness Lounge with Melanin Minds OPENS

Led by Shellsy Malveaux

Location: White Room 

The Rest and Reset Wellness Lounge, hosted by Melanin Minds, offers a sanctuary within the conference for attendees to find solace from the sensory overload and overwhelming networking. This serene oasis provides a safe space for relaxation and rejuvenation, offering self-care resources to help participants restore their energy and find balance during the conference hours. With the Rest and Reset Wellness Lounge, Melanin Minds aims to prioritize the mental and physical well-being of conference attendees, promoting a holistic approach to navigating the event.


10:30AM: Opening Keynote: Do It Scared

Tahiirah Habibi, The Hue Society

Multi-award winning wine and culture expert Tahiirah Habibi knows that fear is a necessary part of parenthood, of leadership, and of survival. But despite consistently being praised for uncompromising strength and constant bravery, rarely do we stop to acknowledge that a life of fearlessness is simply impossible. In this intimate keynote, Tahiirah takes us inward to a place where fear is a positive (and sustainable) emotion— one that we can learn to maintain to not just do it, but do it scared.


11:00AM: Purposeful Leadership

Peter Cook, Uncorked Access

Denise Silverman, The Wine & Food Foundation

Jessica Sanders, DrinkWell Austin

Moderated by Maryam Ahmed, Maryam + Company

What does it mean to be a purposeful leader in 2023? In this panel we explore socially responsible styles of leadership, examining the intention and vulnerability required to guide lasting change. The discussion will cover topics such as the importance of authenticity, the critical role of empathy, and how purposeful leaders can cultivate a sense of belonging and inclusion as stewards of their communities. Whether you are an experienced leader or newly taking on leadership tasks, this panel will provide you with actionable insights and strategies for organizing others while staying true to your own clear sense of purpose.


12:00PM-12:10PM BREAK


12:15PM: Panel - The Role of Radical Self-Acceptance, Presented by Assemblage

Dr. Kim Perkins

Imane Hanine, Martha Stoumen Wines

Darwin Acosta, Co-Fermented

Moderated by Rachel Adams, Assemblage

When we think about "doing the work" of DE&I, we often focus on how we can actively support others - marginalized communities to which we may or may not belong. This outward focus on actions is important, but it needs to be balanced by another crucial aspect of this work: radical self-acceptance.

In this panel discussion moderated by Rachel Adams, Founder of Assemblage, we will discuss how the habit of curiosity about our experiences can help transform our negative self-talk and inner critic into something healthier; how our bodies relate to our emotional selves, and how to radically accept (and even love) what comes up. This practice of self-acceptance is vital, not only in the fight for social justice but also in the journey of unleashing our truest and most authentic selves.


1:15PM: Group Lunch & Networking


2:15 PM: Check In on Intentions

Led by Akeel Bernard


2:35PM: Panel - Centralizing Social Good in Business, Presented by [ABV] Ferments

Bianca Sanon, Paradis Books & Bread

Eric Hsu, Coast and Valley

Kevin Lawler, Good Work Austin

Christopher Renfro, 280 Project

Moderated by Roxy Eve, Turning Tables NOLA

As more and more businesses address the impact of their decisions on employees, customers, and community, they must decide just how to carry out socially sound business practices. From fair wages in restaurants to labor-inclusive winery certifications like B-Corp, we’ve gathered a group of entrepreneurs in wine and hospitality that are using their businesses as incredible vehicles for equity. In this panel they’ll share with you their processes, each offering a comprehensive perspective on what’s worked, what’s failed, and ultimately what’s next.


3:30PM: Closing Keynote: Compensation in the Industry | Past, Present & Future

Justine Belle, Kalchē Wine Cooperative, Inc.

Anyone who has worked in food and beverage long enough knows that fair and just compensation remains wildly out of reach. Historically, financial disparity has been an easy way for those in power to take advantage of employees. In this keynote examining the global and domestic history of tipping, Wine Educator and Labor Justice Activist Justine Belle Lambright sheds light on these all-too-familiar patterns and power dynamics— inviting attendees to question how they contribute to these systems, and the healthier ways that we can perform as an industry. 


4:00PM: Closing & Reset Intentions

Led by Kamilah Thomas


4:15PM Closing Remarks - Conclude Day 1 Conference


5:00PM: Taste the Change: A Pouring Event (open to the public)

Light bites and refreshments provided


8:00 PM: Get Lifted presented by DePart and Co-Fermented

A special after party for conference attendees with DJ, food and more wine!

Hosted offsite: LoLo Wine, 1504 E 6th St, Austin, TX 78702

Tuesday, May 23

8:00AM: Sunrise Meditation (Sound Bowls)

Led by Shellsy Malveaux and LaGina R. Harris

Hosted offsite: Dimension Gallery Sculpture Park

Join Melanin Minds at the sunrise morning meetup during the conference for a serene and introspective start to your day. This gathering is centered around meditation and the practice of sitting still, providing a calming atmosphere to cultivate mindfulness and inner peace. Participants will engage in guided meditation, breathing exercises, and will foster mental clarity and a positive mindset for the day ahead.


8:00AM: Group Breakfast & Networking


9:00AM: Call to Attention

Miguel de Leon


9:10AM: Co-Fermented - Tools and Tips for Creating Safe Spaces for LGBTQIA+ Folks

Darwin Acosta, Co-Fermented

Eric Fleming, The Hue Society

Justine Belle, Kalchē Wine Cooperative, Inc.

These last few years we have seen the amazing industry-wide efforts of wine organizations prioritizing safe spaces and opportunities for minority groups. But with it, we have also seen the active erasure of the LGBTQIA+ community. When it comes to conversations of DE&I, the LGBTQIA+ perspective is consistently brushed over, dismissed, or not discussed at all. This fireside chat will talk through what it is like being an LGBTQIA+ identifying individual in the wine industry today— drawing on the experiences of three voices from different corners of the wine world. Join Darwin Acosta of Co-Fermented, Eric Flemming and Justine Bell of Kalche Wine Co. as they explore what we can all do to provide safe and inclusive spaces for LGBTQIA+ folks.


10:10AM: Workshop 1: Cognitive Restructuring Workshop presented by Melanin Minds

Melissa Mel, Melanin Minds

Kamilah Thomas, Licensed Psychotherapist and Wellness Coach

This Cognitive Reframing workshop focuses on promoting healthy & self-aware cognition. Participants will grant themselves permission to activate new structures of self-reflection while empowering their individual leadership styles. By the end of the workshop, participants will leave with tools to move with courage & self compassion.


11:00AM: Workshop 2: Shifting the Language and Culture of Wine presented by The Wine Linguist

Alice Achayo

It’s 2023— whose languages, cultures and cuisines are part of the experience of wine? In this engaging workshop from The Wine Linguist, Alice Achayo takes us through the current state of wine language and how it relates to our sensory reference points. Prepare to examine the cuisines and cultures of the Global South to not just re-educate, but re-shape the language, inclusivity and future of wine.

11:50AM: Closing Remarks

12:00PM: Lunch

Guests are invited to stay and enjoy lunch together or make a box to go.

1:00PM: Conclude Day 2 of Conference

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