LCBO to fund bursaries and scholarships for diverse woman to enter beverage industry

George Soleas

As part of the LCBO’s Spirit of Sustainability commitment, the Board launched its new Spirit of Inclusion Initiative, a program designed to create more opportunities for diverse women to enter, advance and thrive in the beverage alcohol industry.

The program will fund bursaries and scholarships, facilitate mentor relationships and identify paid co-op placements for students registered in Niagara College’s beverage alcohol programs. It will also establish a research scholar position at Brock University focused on understanding the barriers diverse women face in the fields of wine-making, brewing and distilling.

“It is our responsibility to use our influence and resources to increase diverse representation and foster inclusion within the beverage alcohol industry,” said George Soleas, President & CEO, LCBO. “The Spirit of Inclusion Initiative is a holistic, long-term commitment to support diverse women looking to begin or advance their careers in the fields of wine-making, brewing and distilling. Its success relies on the strength of our incredible community and trade partners, and I am excited for the impact we will achieve together.”

The Spirit of Inclusion Initiative has received support from Charton Hobbs Moët Hennessy, DIAGEO and Labatt Breweries of Canada, who are committed to our vision to enhance industry diversity.

“We are pleased to partner with LCBO on their Spirit of Inclusion Initiative that focuses on bringing greater diversity to the beverage alcohol industry,” said Lynn Wells, Interim President and Provost and Vice-President, Academic at Brock University.

“We thank the LCBO for their generous gift which will make it possible for many under-represented students in our beverage programs to achieve their dreams,” concludes Marc Nantel, Vice President of Research and External Relations, Niagara College.


As part of the initiative, the LCBO will also work with the Canadian Women’s Foundation and with Vinequity, a group established to ensure equitable treatment and provide resources for BIPOC Canadians working in wine, to support and evolve the initiative.

The Spirit of Inclusion Initiative is open to Canadians who self-identify as women from backgrounds currently underrepresented in the beverage alcohol industry, and who require financial support to complete their education.

To learn more about the Spirit of Inclusion Initiative, and the bursaries, scholarships, and mentorship opportunities on offer, visit