Mary Ewing-Mulligan, CWE, MW, President, Instructor
Mary Ewing-Mulligan, Master of Wine, is a leading wine educator, columnist, and author. She was the first woman in America to become a Master of Wine, a title that represents the highest level of knowledge and proficiency in the wine trade. She is currently one of only 57 Masters of Wine in the U.S., and 417 in the world.
Mary is president of International Wine Center (IWC) in New York, an independent wine school founded in 1982. At International Wine Center, Mary runs the academically rigorous programs of the Wine & Spirit Education Trust® (WSET®), the world’s largest wine-education organization. These programs offer Americans the traditional pre-Master of Wine education. The ranks of U.S. MWs now include fourteen former students of International Wine Center.
Mary is responsible for introducing WSET programs in the U.S., offering them to students of International Wine Center since 1994. Serving as Executive Director of WSET Programs for the U.S., Mary assisted independent wine schools, universities and distributors in offering the WSET courses in their own markets. Through her efforts, the courses extended their reach into more than 40 U.S. cities.
Mary is author of Wine Style — Using Your Senses to Explore and Enjoy Wine, published by Wiley & Sons. She has co-authored (with her husband, Ed McCarthy) Wine For Dummies, 7th Edition and ten other wine books in the …For Dummies series. With well over one million copies sold since it was published in late 1995, and translations into thirty-eight languages, Wine For Dummies ranks as America’s fastest-selling wine book ever and one of its most enduring. Both Wine For Dummies and Italian Wine For Dummies were nominated for the James Beard Award as best wine book in their publication years.
Mary is a popular columnist for Wine Review Online. For more than ten years, she was wine columnist for New York’s second largest circulation newspaper, The Daily News, and served for six years as the wine columnist for Nation’s Restaurant News, a publication for the restaurant trade. On a freelance basis, she has contributed articles to several publications in the U.S. and England including the Los Angeles Times, Martha Stewart Living, The Wine Journal, The Wine News, Wine Enthusiast, and Family Circle. She also has been a regular guest on the NPR radio show, The Splendid Table.
She frequently judges at major national and international tasting competitions and is also a regular leader of seminars at major wine events across the U.S. Mary served as president of the Institute of Masters of Wine (North America) from 2004 through 2008, and for twenty years served on that organization’s Board of Directors. Her accomplishments have been featured in numerous publications, including Food & Wine magazine, The New York Times, The Wine Spectator, Newsday, and Gourmet, and she has made dozens of television appearances. Last year, The Pennsylvania Gazette, the alumni publication of her alma mater, University of Pennsylvania, published an in-depth profile about Mary for their January/February 2021 issue.
Over the years, Mary has been the recipient of numerous awards. Most recently she was nominated as Wine Educator of the Year for the 2020 Wine Enthusiast Wine Star Awards. In 2019, Mary was honored with WSET’s prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award. In 2016, she was recognized as a Wine Leader by the Italian Wine & Food Institute. Other awards include the Italian Trade Commission’s Distinguished Service award in 2009, the NYIT Gold Coast Classic Professional Excellence Award in 2009, the Champagne Pommery ‘Wine Muse’ Award in 2005, the 2003 European Wine Council Distinguished Achievement Award, and the Peter M.F. Sichel Award for Wine Education in 1994.
After graduating from the University of Pennsylvania, Mary began her career at the Italian Trade Commission, where she was responsible for educating consumers across the United States about Italy’s wines. After eight years with the Italian government, she moved to the private sector, where she worked as a winery agent and held a senior position at PepsiCo Wines & Spirits before dedicating her career to wine education.