Gerald Ayling 1978


From 1950-1958, Gerald was employed in the “Off License Trade” in the south of England, for a chain of stores as a Branch Relief Manager. He attended Wine and Spirits lectures by the WSET, held at the Charing Cross Institute in London.

He immigrated to Canada in 1958, where he was employed as one of the first Wine Consultants at the LCBO in 1959. As Chief Consultant, he helped build up the service. Gerald travelled the province to set up wine displays in LCBO stores and assisted with audits of Canadian wineries, until leaving for the private sector in 1969.

From 1969 to 1989, he was employed by McGuinness Distillers as Manager of Imports, later rising to Vice President within the company. During this time, he gave wine lectures, and travelled upon invitation to other Canadian provincial jurisdictions. He travelled on business to all Canadian provinces and territories, as well as to most of the wine growing regions in Europe, the USA and South America.

In the early 1970’s, Gerald assisted in the formation of IWEG, wrote the WSET Lower and Higher Certificates, and later in 1988 wrote the Diploma as the oldest participant in that year. He handled for a time, the IWEG WSET Correspondence courses for Canada and assisted with teaching local candidates taking Certificate courses.

Gerald served as President of the OIWSBA from 1981 to 1982.

From 1989 to 1993, Gerald managed the Toronto office of the Eastern Division of Pacific Wine & Spirits Ltd. From 1994 to 2004, he served as Secretary/Co-ordinator with the Ontario Imported Wine-Spirits-Beer Association. Gerald retired from the Wine & Spirits trade in 2005, after serving in it for 55 years.

Awards Received:

1978: OIWSBA Norman Gilchrist Award 2004: OIWSBA Achievement Award

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