Paso Robles Wine Country Alliance announces new marketing director

PASO ROBLES — Increasing its ability to meaningfully connect with consumers and industry members alike, the Paso Robles Wine Country Alliance (PRWCA) welcomes back Krista Smith as its new marketing director. Smith brings over a decade of marketing and communication experience to the role.

Smith will focus on expanding awareness and deepening consumer engagement with Paso Robles wine country through a strategic approach to social media, elevated event experiences, advertising, and content creation for the blog and “Where Wine Takes You” podcast, among others.

“We are excited to welcome Krista back to the Wine Country Alliance as our marketing director,” said PRWCA Executive Director Joel Peterson. “Her intimate knowledge of the organization and our members paired with a fresh perspective from her recent experiences outside of the wine industry, make her a valuable addition to the team.” 

Smith previously supported consumer engagement efforts for the PRWCA from 2011 to 2016. During that time, she helped amplify the region through a number of successful marketing programs and events, including the launch of the Paso Uncorked blog and the inaugural BlendFest on the Coast event.

Most recently, she spent two years with Cal Poly Partners, formerly Cal Poly Corporation, where she managed marketing and communications efforts for multiple entities across the university including the Administration and Finance division, Cal Poly Digital Transformation Hub, California Cybersecurity Center, and Campus Dining.

During her time away from the PRWCA, Smith also worked in public affairs and communications for the Cal Poly College of Liberal Arts and served agri-food clients at San Diego-based public relations firm Nuffer, Smith, Tucker (NST). While at NST, Smith expanded her expertise in both the agri-food and nonprofit sectors, supporting industry outreach for the California Department of Food Agriculture’s California Citrus Pest & Disease Prevention Program, and Ag Vision, the California State Board of Food and Agriculture’s 10-year strategic plan, along with the Conrad Prebys Foundation’s inaugural $1 million grant cycle.

Smith holds a Master’s degree in public policy and a bachelor’s degree in journalism, both from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo.

Smith officially rejoined the PRWCA in October 2023 and aspires to help fulfill the organization’s mission to promote and protect the Paso Robles American Viticultural Area, bringing visitors to the area and awareness to potential customers in markets around the region, state, and country. 

“It’s a privilege to return to an organization that is making such a significant impact within our local Paso Robles community and in agriculture and tourism more broadly,” said Smith. “I’m excited to bring my expertise and passions back to the PRWCA and continue to advance Paso Robles wine country.”

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About Paso Robles Wine Country Alliance

The Paso Robles Wine Country Alliance is the official trade and marketing organization that represents wineries, growers, and businesses in the Paso Robles American Viticultural Area. Centrally located between San Francisco and Los Angeles, along California’s Central Coast, Paso Robles Wine Country encompasses more than 40,000 vineyard acres and 200 wineries.

Feature Image: New Paso Robles Wine Country Alliance Marketing Director Krista Smith returns to the organization to help fulfill its mission to promote and protect the Paso Robles American Viticultural Area. Contributed Photo