Tom Black to Receive Norman M. Lipman Award at Nashville Wine Auction’s Grand Cru


NASHVILLE, TENN. – May 16, 2017 – Noted Nashville entrepreneur and nationally recognized wine collector Tom Black will receive the 2017 Norman M. Lipman Award presented by the Nashville Wine Auction. The presentation will take place during the Grand Cru Evening on June 22, the first of four annual l’Eté du Vin events.

“l’Eté du Vin is one of the nation’s top wine auctions because people like Tom Black are generous with their time, their vast networks and their amazing wine cellars,” said Holly Whaley, Nashville Wine Auction president and CEO. “We are proud to honor Tom at the upcoming Grand Cru. We will also reveal a preview to the auction, introduce this year’s cancer-fighting beneficiaries, and recognize our top wine donors in the Grand Cru Guild.”

With a cellar at one time consisting of more than 60,000 bottles of great wine, Black has formed one of the largest and most well-rounded collections in the in the United Sates.  He also makes two wines with Jim Clendenen of Au Bon Climate only made available through charity wine auctions like Nashville Wine Auction.

Tom Black has a long track record of success as a business leader in the banking industry.  He has led several top companies, providing innovative marketing and technology solutions for the industry.  If you’ve ever used an ATM, signed up for a premium checking bank account, or have seen images of your checks on your bank statement, then you’ve seen some of Tom Black’s handiwork.

Tom has been a co-founder of founder of several start-ups, 3 of which he helped take public.  Currently he runs the Tom Black Center for Excellence which customizes sales training and coaching services for companies of all sizes.  He was written several books including the wildly popular Boxcar Millionaire.

In addition to Tom’s love for business, he is equally, if not more, passionate about wine.  After a weekend trip to Napa Valley in 1986, Tom fell in love with wine, and has not looked back since. Tom has been a National Board member in the Chaîne des Rôtisseurs, a Chambellan in the Ordre de Côuteaux, the highest rank a non-Champagne producer can achieve, and was chosen as one of six collectors to participate in the Millennium wine project for the Smithsonian Institute.  He has written over 200 published articles on wine and has a free wine app (

As one of the world’s most knowledgeable and well-known wine experts, Tom Black has been featured in international food and wine magazines and is highly respected among celebrity chefs and winemakers alike.  Using his passion for wine as a cause, Tom has raised millions of dollars for charities across the country.  Tom Black’s knowledge of wine and generous spirit has made him a favorite son of the wine community in Nashville and a gentleman worthy of the Norman M. Lipman Award.

Christi and James Edwards will host the Grand Cru in their home in Belle Meade. The event is the first opportunity to preview some of the top auction lots and learn more about the Nashville Wine Auction’s eight cancer-fighting beneficiaries. Tickets are $250 and available at

ABOUT NORMAN LIPMAN: Norman Lipman is remembered by many as a generous humanitarian and a national leader of the wine and spirits industry.  He was a founder and zealous supporter of l’Eté du Vin, the country’s oldest charity wine auction. Lipman left a legacy of success, and Nashville Wine Auction has raised more than $21 million in support of its charitable beneficiaries and the fight against cancer since 1980.

Though his triumphs are unforgettable, Lipman always identified, celebrated and fostered the achievement of others. The award is presented annually in Lipman’s memory and in recognition of individuals who have embraced the humanitarian qualities of wisdom, courage, optimism, commitment and integrity in their personal and professional lives. To continue his tradition of encouragement, nominators are asked to name a person they feel is especially worthy of recognition for his or her positive personal attributes.

ABOUT THE NORMAN M. LIPMAN AWARD: The public commemoration of the Norman Lipman Award is a specially commissioned sculpture, Man of Love and Wisdom, by Tennessee artist Terry Williams. The twelve-foot, steel sculpture features a figure striding forward to offer assistance with his hand stretched out in compassion.  An owl, the ancient symbol of divine perception and wisdom, rests on his shoulder. It is on permanent loan to Saint Thomas West Hospital in Nashville where Norman Lipman received treatment and comfort during his final illness. The sculpture is housed in a private atrium where the families of cancer patients can retire for peace and reflection.

Past recipients have included leading figures from the wine and spirits industry, as well as private individuals noted for their love of wine and their respect for those who produce it, such as Robert Mondavi, Marvin L. Shanken, Jim Clendenen and Billy Ray Hearn. Last year’s recipient was Kix Brooks. Each recipient of the Norman M. Lipman Award receives a steel replica of the owl from Man of Love and Wisdom, as a unique recognition of his or her achievement.

ABOUT NASHVILLE WINE AUCTION: Nashville Wine Auction’s mission is to unite the wine community to fund the fight against cancer. Throughout the year, Nashville Wine Auction hosts four major events – Pairings: Nashville’s Ultimate Wine and Food Weekend, l’Eté du Vin: The Country’s Longest Running Charity Wine Auction, Champagne and Chardonnay: A Sparkling Evening Just for Ladies and The Men’s Event: Honoring the Life and Spirit of Billy Ray Hearn. Established in 1980, the Nashville Wine Auction has raised more than $21 million for organizations whose purpose is directly related to treatment, patient care and eradication of cancer here in Middle Tennessee. The 2017 list of beneficiaries includes the American Cancer Society’s Hope Lodge, Gilda’s Club Nashville, Leukemia Lymphoma Society, Make-A-Wish Foundation® of Middle Tennessee, PearlPoint Cancer Support, Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center, Saint Thomas Cancer Network, and St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital.