NAPA, Calif. (April 20, 2022) – Arnulfo Solorio was named 2022 Napa Valley Producer of the Year. Solorio (“Nufo”) is a partner and vice president of operations at Silverado Farming Company, where he has held leadership positions since 2002.

2022 Napa Valley Producer of the Year, Arnulfo Solorio. Photo by Suzanne Becker Bronk

Nufo served three 3-year terms on the Napa Valley Grapegrowers Board of Directors, as the first Hispanic person to hold this position. His legacy, however, may be the establishment of the Napa Valley Farmworker Foundation in 2010. Nufo was passionate about establishing the Foundation as a way to provide professional development and educational opportunities for farmworkers and their families. The Farmworker Foundation now serves thousands of people each year through its literacy, leadership, job training, mentorship and community involvement programs. Arnulfo serves as a director on its board and is currently chair of the farm worker training committee.

Nufo was born in Patzimaro, Michoacan, Mexico. From an early age, he dreamed of going to school, but his family owned a ranch in Mexico, and he was told, “Books don’t feed you; animals and the earth do.

Pursuing his dreams, Nufo traveled to Napa at the age of 14, but soon realized that to get an education he needed money. He started working at Charles Krug as a field worker and assistant mechanic while following crops through Arizona, California and Washington. He eventually got through school and was able to enroll in Napa Valley College in 1984. Since starting college, he’s taken enough classes to receive three associate’s degrees — all while working full-time and raising a family. That he has energy left to volunteer with the Napa Valley Grapegrowers and make such a difference in our community is a testament to his work ethic and strong sense of self.

Solorio was the first person in his family to be documented, to become a citizen and to go to school. He has worked as a vineyard manager for some of Napa’s most prestigious properties including Franciscan, Domaine Chandon, Mondavi, Charles Krug and the Tonella family.

He strongly believes that education is the key to success and that learning never stops. Beyond managing operations and people at Silverado Farming Company, he is part of the team that develops employee training, education, personal growth and reward programs. He believes that empathy and compassion are key to successful leadership.

NVG President Michael Silacci said, “It’s no wonder someone as thoughtful, humble and passionate as Arnulfo came up with the idea for the Farm Workers Foundation. We are grateful for his tireless efforts in the community and his leadership within the Napa Valley Grapegrowers.

Nominations for Producer of the Year come from NVG members. The recipient is chosen by a special selection committee made up of past presidents, current directors and active committee members. Award criteria include: a strong commitment to sustainable practices; recognized leadership in agricultural preservation; dedicated community attention, contributions to Napa Valley grape growers; and someone who actively promotes Napa’s reputation for the highest quality wineries.

About Napa Valley Winemakers

Napa Valley Grapegrowers is a non-profit business organization that has played a vital role in strengthening Napa Valley’s reputation as a world-class wine region for 46 years. Its mission is to preserve and promote Napa Valley’s world-class wineries. NVG represents 685 winemakers and associated businesses in Napa County.

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