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Norwalk winery earns Double Gold

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D & D Smith Winery achieved a Concordance Gold on its Hillbilly Watermelon Wine at the recent Ohio Wine Competition, which took place in Ashtabula at Kent State University on May 15. Several of its other wines also won awards and accolades.

Justin Paez


Norwalk winery earns Double Gold

Business Roundup
Norwalk winery earns Double Gold Zoe Greszler • Jun 28, 2019 at 10:00 AM

D & D Smith Winery recently earned the highest honor possible for one of its most popular wines.

The business, located at 401 W. Main St., presented several wines in the Ohio Wine Competition, which recently took place in Ashtabula. The competition, which had nearly 300 entries, are evaluated “blind.” Judges do not know which wineries submitted the wines or where the juice or grapes were sourced.

“This really showcases Ohio’s ability to produce high-quality wines from Ohio-grown fruit,” said Todd Steiner, enology program manager and winemaking specialist at the Ohio Agricultural and Research and Development Center (OARDC).

Steiner oversees the Ohio Wine Competition in conjunction with Kent State University’s Ashtabula branch campus, which offers an enology (winemaking) and viticulture (wine grape-growing) program. The OWC welcomes entries from all Ohio wineries. Currently, there are greater than 300 Ohio wineries. Of the 288 entries, there were 27 Concordance Gold winners. This honor is awarded when all judges provide a gold medal designation-Double Gold. There were 32 golds, 93 silvers, and 66 bronze awards given.

The competition was a success for D & D Smith Winery, which achieved a Concordance Gold on the Hillbilly Watermelon Wine.

Some other D & D award-winners included these bronze recipients: Due Vino Miscela-Gold, Moscato, The Locals, and Beach’n all won Silver, Gewurztraminer, Riesling, This’n’That, He Said She Said, and Sangria.

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Willard’s Paez named chief

WILLARD — A former Willard resident is the new police chief in a central Ohio community.

Justin Paez was promoted to the Dublin police chief position this week, according to ThisWeek Community News.

Paez had served as interim chief since former chief Heinz von Eckartsberg retired from the Dublin Police Department on March 22 to become assistant superintendent with the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation.

Paez prepared himself for this role, and the city did some succession planning last year in anticipation of von Eckartsberg’s retirement, Dana McDaniel, Dublin’s city manager, told ThisWeek.

“He’s done a lot to prepare himself,” personally, professionally and educationally,” McDaniel told the newspaper.

Paez joined the Dublin department in 2005 and was promoted to corporal in 2007. He became a sergeant in 2009 and then a lieutenant in 2015.

He has a bachelor’s degree from Bowling Green State University and is a candidate for a master’s degree in business administration with a focus in leadership and organizational change from Tiffin University, according to ThisWeek, citing a June 10 memo to council.

Realtor named honorary investor

BELLEVUE — David W. Freitag, a Realtor executive from Bellevue, has become a Crystal R Presidents Circle investor in the Realtors Political Action Committee. 

Freitag has supported RPAC for more than 17 years and has been a member of the National Association of Realtors since 2002. He holds mediation and ombudsman certifications, the RCE, ABR, BPOR, and SFR designations. He lives in Bellevue with his wife Marilyn.

4CG initiative expands

Economic development and workforce development organizations in Huron, Ottawa, Sandusky and Seneca counties are partnering together under the 4CG initiative.

4CG represents the 4 County Group 4 Collaborative Growth. The group began working together six years ago to collectively address the region’s workforce challenges.

Initially, 4CG focused its efforts on Manufacturing Month in October with manufacturing bus tours for educators, speaker events, and manufacturing/career showcases. These showcase events provide the opportunity for ninth grade students and school leaders to experience today’s work environment and skill sets through interactive stations designed by local manufacturers, businesses and skilled trade organizations.

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