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Korsmo to lead wine and spirit wholesalers

Current head of American Land Title Association to take position formerly held by Craig Wolf


July 19, 2018
By Walt Williams

Michelle Korsmo has been tapped as the next CEO of the $11 million-revenue Wine & Spirits Wholesalers of America. She will succeed Craig Wolf, who stepped down in June to run for Maryland attorney general as a Republican.

Korsmo currently is CEO of the $10 million-revenue American Land Title Association, a position she has held since 2011. She will start at WSWA in mid-September.

“Michelle is an inspiring leader who will ensure that our industry and association are strong today and anticipating the ever changing consumer environment,” Barkley Stuart, chairman of WSWA’s executive committee, said in a statement.

In one recognition of the changing environment, WSWA on July 12 announced its support for states that want to legalize marijuana, as long as the states establish marketplace regulations similar to those for alcohol.  

Before joining ALTA, Korsmo was executive vice president of the Americans for Prosperity Foundation and deputy chief of staff at the U.S. Department of Labor. She began her career as a business owner in North Dakota, where she built an advocacy and communications firm.

In a statement, Korsmo said wholesalers and their business partners have “built the safest, and most well-regulated” beverage marketplace in the world, but they are facing a disruptive economy and the association must prepare for the future.

“Finding consumer-focused solutions for these challenges is an opportunity I welcome, and I’m excited about what the future holds,” she said.

Recruitment firm Korn Ferry assisted in the search.