The Sonoma County Grape Growers Association is presenting Duff Bevill, Bevill Family Vineyards and Bevill Vineyard Management, with the 2006 Viticulture Award of Excellence.

Duff has worked in Sonoma County for 33 years, forming Bevill Vineyard Management in 1976. He purchased his first vineyard in 1979. Today he owns or leases 82 acres of vineyard and farms over 800 acres for his clients.

Duff has been a leader in the wine community, serving on the boards of the North Coast Grape Growers Association, the Winegrowers of Dry Creek Valley where he was president, and the Sonoma County Grape Growers Association (SCGGA). He was president of SCGGA in 2004/2005 and is currently vice president of the Water Users of Dry Creek Valley Corporation. In the past year, Duff has been a leader in the efforts to create the Sonoma County Winegrape Commission that will be voted on this May/June. It was at Duff’s suggestion that SCGGA created its unique on-line Purple Book, a way for SCGGA growers to market their vineyard and list grapes for sale.

Duff was one of the original vineyard hosts for the Integrated Pest Management (IPM) Grower Appellation Meetings and is a strong supporter of sustainable farming. Projects beyond IPM include riparian revegetation on Dry Creek and implementing programs to retain his vineyard employees.

“I would like to have 20-year veterans working for me who are happy at whatever job they are doing at every level in the company. That experience is invaluable for their skills and knowledge, and for their ability to mentor our newer employees,” he said.

Duff’s partner in Bevill Vineyard Management and in life is his wife, Nancy. They have four children, Nathan and Hanna Bevill, Kathy Doig and Larry Smatt, and two grandchildren. The Bevills are supporters of the Healdsburg FFA Fair, the Healdsburg Hospital and Canine Companions of Santa Rosa.

SCGGA is pleased to recognize Duff’s leadership and many contributions to SCGGA and to the wine and local community with the 2006 Viticulture Award of Excellence.