17 Nov 2020

William Wouters elected president of ASI, the Association de la Sommellerie Internationale

17 Nov 2020. William Wouters of Belgium has been elected the new president of the Association de la Sommellerie Internationale. The vote was held as part of the organization’s annual General Assembly. Wouters is already a well-known figure within the organization, as an ASI Board member, national president, and sommelier contest competitor. Upon hearing the results, he said, “What’s important now is to work together toward the betterment of ASI as a community and as an institution. My team and I are ready!” Wouters replaces outgoing president Andrés Rosberg of Argentina, whose three-year term began in June 2017.

Wouters will be joined in his three-year term by a restricted board filled with old and new faces. Peer F. Holm was selected as the ASI Secretary General, Julie Dupouy-Young as the ASI Deputy Secretary General, Philippe Faure-Brac as ASI Treasurer and Samuil Angelov as ASI Deputy Treasurer.

A full slate of vice presidents was also elected: Saiko Tamura-Soga (Japan) for Asia & Oceania, Michèle Aström Chantôme (Morocco) for Africa & the Middle East, Piotr Kamecki (Poland) for Europe and Marcos Flores Tlalpan (Mexico) for the Americas. ASI vice presidents are primarily responsible for coordinating the associations in each continent or geographical area.

Due to the Corona pandemic, the ASI General Assembly was held fully online for the first time. Two electronic platforms, one for the meetings and another more secure platform for voting, were used for the event. A qualified attorney was on hand in Cyprus, the “host nation,” to ensure that the online version was in compliance with the organization’s charter. A neutral moderator guided participants through the events, presenting the candidates and issues in French and English.

The GA also featured presentations from its various committees, including PR, Communication & Marketing, Ethics & Compliance, Sommeliers Contests Committee, Education, Certification Exam, and By-Laws.