Debbie Zimmerman receives Lifetime Achievement Award

Grape Growers of Ontario’s CEO receives Lifetime Achievement Award

November 18, 2022 (St. Catharines): Matthias Oppenlaender, Chair of the Grape Growers of Ontario, congratulates CEO Debbie Zimmerman on receiving the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce at the 2022 Women in Business Awards.

The Women in Business Awards (WIBAs) recognize the leadership and success of women in our business community. The WIBAs aim to encourage more women to seek out and reach for leadership roles in business, politics and our community.

“On behalf of the 500 farm families across the province growing processing grapes and making 100% grown in Ontario wine, we thank Debbie for her commitment to our industry and congratulate her on this well-deserved recognition.” – Matthias Oppenlaender, Chair, Grape Growers of Ontario

Debbie’s political career and contributions to several boards and associations have enabled her to advocate for Ontario’s grape and wine industry and influence the economic success of the sector. The Ontario grape and wine industry supports 22,000 jobs and has a $5.5 billion impact on the province’s economy. As the organization celebrates its 75th anniversary, it remains rooted in its’ commitment to Ontario’s grape growing families and industry partners. Debbie continues to build on the organization’s reputation of skill and success established under her leadership.

Debbie is a strong supporter of the next generation of growers; working with several two- and three-generation farm families including female growers, stakeholders and industry leaders. Ontario’s grape growers have crowned three women Grape Kings, and welcome the opportunity to engage further with our female members. Debbie and the the Grape Growers of Ontario’s Board of Directors have established an environment of respect, and value diverse life experiences and cultures that ensure that all voices are valued and heard.

The Grape Growers of Ontario thank the Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce for recognizing Debbie’s leadership in the grape and wine industry and in communities across the province.

Members' Toolbox

Resources for grape growers


Benjamin Froese named 2022 Grape King

View article

Debbie Zimmerman receives Lifetime Achievement Award

View article

Upcoming Events

Niagara Icewine Festival - January 2023

View event