Albuquerque Journal (Albuquerque, NM)

Marketer extraordinaire has faith in N.M. wine.(Final)

Byline: Harry Moskos Of the Journal

Bealquin "Bill" Gomez sees a bright future for New Mexico's growing wine industry.

That's if the local merchants will support it.

Gomez should know. Described by his colleagues as "a marketer extraordinaire," Gomez retired this month after nearly 29 years with New Mexico State University's Cooperative Extension Service.

Gomez has spent much of that career marketing New Mexico products, from alfalfa to pecans to wine.

"New Mexico now has 33 wineries," Gomez says. "What is really interesting is that California wine sales in New Mexico are flat or going down, but New Mexico wine sales for the last three years have grown by 15 to 20 percent annually."

Gomez, in his NMSU career, worked with vineyards to create five annual wine festivals. He also helped to organize more than 45 events promoting the state's wine industry. He has been on the boards of the New Mexico Vine and Wine Society, the New Mexico Wine Growers Association and the Winery Association of New Mexico. …

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