February 3-4, 2021 | Jacob K Javits Convention Center, New York

Yannick Benjamin

Yannick Headshot

Yannick Benjamin

Sommelier and Co-founder & Director of Development - Wheeling Forward


Yannick is the Head Sommelier at the University Club and an Advanced Sommelier with the Court of Master Sommeliers. Yannick worked at Le Cirque, Oceana, Jean-Georges, and Atlas before becoming a sommelier at Felidia and Atelier at the Ritz-Carlton. In 2003, a car accident left Benjamin paralyzed below the waist and he quickly adapted, outfitting his wheelchair with a table that allows him to work the floor as a sommelier. Yannick has been recognized among Wine Enthusiast’s Top 40 under 40 and was named Person of the Year by New Mobility Magazine in 2017. In 2012, Benjamin co-founded Wheeling Forward, which steps in to help recently disabled people who lack a support system. A related initiative, Wine on Wheels, is focused on events that raise funds and awareness to aid employment for the disabled in the wine industry. Yannick’s deep connections in the wine world have helped Wheeling Forward to build a broad base of supporters and inspired many sommeliers and wine distributors to give back to the community.

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