Born and raised on a family farm in rural Manitoba, Elaine left her farming roots to study Home Economics at the University of Manitoba in 1962. While studying in Winnipeg, she met her future husband, Don. Following their marriage and subsequent move to Ontario in 1966, Elaine then worked as a fashion educator at Seneca College in Toronto. Taking eight years off to raise three daughters, she went back to school in 1985 and achieved her CA designation in 1992. After five years of private-sector accounting work in both Vancouver and Toronto, she nonetheless began to feel the pull back to her family farming roots. So, in 1998 Don & Elaine purchased a 100 acre apple orchard in Niagara-on-the-Lake, creating ‘Delaine Vineyard’ as a research project to determine effective viticultural techniques for growing high quality wine grapes in the Niagara Peninsula. It was then that she developed a real passion for vineyard management. Even though Delaine Vineyard was sold in 2006, enough fire remained for her to want to start another project rooted in the land soon thereafter.
In addition to Elaine’s love of the wine industry is her appreciation for good design, and her understanding that beauty also lies in the detail. She has been involved in a number of design projects in her career, including the development of a Niagara-based winery with Frank Gehry, and the hospitality area for Jackson Triggs Niagara Estate. Elaine’s appreciation for good design, detail, and finance, combined with her passion for the land and her love of great wine provide not only the backbone for Culmina’s business, but also act as the glue that keeps the Triggs family working together.
When Elaine is not at Culmina, she can be found visiting her four grandchildren, or indeed spoiling them from afar; filling her basket at local farmers markets, cooking sumptuous meals for her friends and family; attending a seasonal premier at the Shaw Festival Theatre; or vacationing with Don to far-off destinations.