Open Letter

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George and Kim Jage

Tonight was overwhelming for Kim and I with the affection and kindness the community bestowed upon us.

I learned a long time ago that  you don’t create businesses but you are allowed to manifest opportunities.None of what was experienced tonight by all of us in the industry would have been possible without the belief, energy, and effort of so many.

I had the opportunity to recognize a number of special people who were instrumental in creating the Expo tonight but there  are so many more people who should be given credit for the success and celebration of this achievement for  our  industry. I was remiss in thanking Pearl Dexter, founder  and former editor of Tea A Magazine for her countless referrals and connections she help make when we started the Expo. She is  a dear friend and an inspiration.

There are truly so  many others to thank like Jane Pettigrew who has become a stalwart of our education program and Norwood Pratt for inspiring us all with his prose and wisdom. Thomas Shu for sharing his  songs with all of  us  and being the smiling Buddha of our industry. John and Kathryn Paul who every year come with inspiration and Jodie Cohen for coming to every show we have ever done.

And of course Gail Gastelu for her sneakery in organizing tonight’s surprise!  It is truly impossible for us to thank everyone individually as each of you have had a role in making this our industry, our community, and our event!   On behalf of Kim, myself, and our amazing team, we again thank all of you who have allowed us to achieve the highest calling in life  by being of  service.

Thank you.

Kindest regards,
George Jage

Founder & Director
World Tea Media; Division of F+W Media, Inc.

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George Jage

About George Jage

In 2003, George founded and launched the first North American tea trade show. Since then, World Tea Expo® has been thrice recognized as one of the Fastest 50™ growing events in North America, launched the leading industry news source, the World Tea News®, and created the North American Tea Championship™. World Tea Expo has also in the past held the first ever tea auction on U.S. soil, created and hosted the Top Tea Cocktail Competition™, developed the World Tea Ratings™, publishes the World Tea Buyers’ Guide™, and most recently launched the Tea Infusionist Challenge™. In 2004, George was named as one of Tradeshow Executive’s “Next Generation of Leaders”. In 2006, George was named by Gourmet News as one of the “Top 20 Under 40” in the specialty food business. In 2008 was given the Nevada Entrepreneur Award by In Business Magazine. And most recently in 2010, George was honored by the University of Nevada Las Vegas with the Jerry Valen Award of Distinction for “Hospitality and Convention Executive of the Year”. George has served on the Specialty Tea Institute Advisory Board and was chair for the 2005 STI Symposium. He was a member of Young Entrepreneurs’ Organization from 2003 to 2006. Since 2004, George has been a member of SISO (Society of Independent Show Organizers), currently serves as a Board Member, and chaired the 2010 SISO Executive Conference.

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