Paul is the Director of Operations at Bettinelli Vineyards where he oversees vineyards throughout the Napa Valley. After receiving a B.A. from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, Paul spent two years working and studying viticulture in Chile. Paul serves on the NVG Executive Committee and is the Vice President of the Napa Valley Farmworker Foundation.
Michael Silacci, winemaker, joined Opus One in March 2001 in pursuit of enhancing tradition and maintaining innovation. He has responsibility for all aspects of viticulture and winemaking. Opus One produces luxury wines at its Napa Valley winery in Oakville, California. The 2010 vintage is now distributed in all 50 U.S. States and 65 countries worldwide.
Garrett Buckland grew up raising cattle and growing grapes in the Napa Valley, working for his father's business, Buckland Vineyard Management. Garrett continued working with his father, developing and managing vineyards across Napa, Sonoma, and El Dorado counties until completing UC Davis, where he received a B.S. in Viticulture and Enology. After graduation, Garrett went to work with Steve Matthiasson and started Premiere Viticulture, a vineyard consulting company based in Napa. Garrett is formerly a consulting winemaker. working with over 15,000 cases of ultra-premium wines, past President of the Napa Viticultural Technical Group, and past Conference Chair of the Association of Applied IPM ecologists.
Maher is the Vineyard Manager for Harlan Estate. She has built a career rooted in quality, sustainability, and innovation - and was an early leader in organic farming practices. She joined the team at Harlan in 2001 and developed their in-house vineyard farming and development company, now employing over 50 men and women who oversee the vineyards of Harlan, The Napa Valley Reserve, and Promontory. Mary has overseen Napa vineyards for over 35 years, and was awarded the Napa Valley Grower of the Year in 2014. She has been an industry leader, serving on boards and supporting the Napa community throughout her career. She previously held a seat on the Napa Valley Grapegrowers Board of Directors for 9 years, has chaired the annual Napa County Pruning Contest for 17 years, and has been an active member of both the Industry Issues and Harvest STOMP committees at the NVG.
Erin Bright (Wilson) Russell was born in Napa on a ranch in the southeast part of the County, where her family continues to grow wine grapes for several highly-regarded wine brands. When Erin was hired as Director of Sales and Marketing for Dean and DeLuca in St. Helena she developed and strengthened relationships throughout the Valley, even co-hosting a cooking and lifestyle pilot focused on local farms and purveyors. Later, as her life developed with a husband and children, Erin turned to community service and began her role as Program Manager for Agriculture in the Classroom with the Napa County Farm Bureau. Erin has since applied her background in marketing, design, production and media to effectively direct a number of comprehensive marketing projects for organizations such as the Napa Valley Grapegrowers, Napa Valley Education Foundation and NapaLearns. Erin also had the honor to serve as Manager of Regional Fundraising and Communications for successful State Assembly and Senate campaigns for California State Senator Bill Dodd, Third Senate District representative. When Erin is not in the office, you will find her riding horses, reading trade journals, hiking, gardening and cooking delicious meals for friends and family.
Walt Brooks is the owner and operator of Brooks Family Vineyard and a partner in Amethyst and Campion wines. Walt has graduate degrees in Physics and Business as well as AA degrees from NVC in viticulture and winemaking. After a thirty year career at NASA, Walt and his wife Bernie moved to Napa and developed their Cabernet Sauvignon project in the Oak Knoll District in 1999. Walt represents the NVG on the Napa Valley Vine Trail Board and serves on the NVG issues committee.
The driving force behind boutique Napa Valley label ZIATA, Karen Cakebread relishes every small step that brings a wine from vineyard to table. Karen launched ZIATA—named for her beloved mother Mary Annunziata Webb—in 2008 with a widely revered Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir. Today, the collection also includes the Mia Madre Red Blend, a moving tribute to Karen’s mom. Karen's first foray into the wine industry came in 1988, when she began marketing Cakebread Cellars wines. Her role spanned 18 years and would see Karen traverse the globe as director of the winery’s corporate hospitality, wine education and international marketing initiatives. Karen’s roots are firmly planted in Calistoga, where she tends to her Sauvignon Blanc vines at the home ranch, with her affable Labrador Neela by her side.
Ted Hall owns Long Meadow Ranch with his wife, Laddie, and son, Chris. Long Meadow Ranch produces ultra-premium wine, extra virgin olive oil, grass-fed beef, and organic fruits and vegetables – all employing sustainable, organic practices. Their 650-acre home ranch is in the Mayacamas Mountains above Rutherford. In addition, Long Meadow Ranch operates a sustainable food, wine and agricultural center in St. Helena, which is anchored by the farm-to-table restaurant, Farmstead. Ted holds a B.S.E. degree in electrical engineering from Princeton University and an MBA degree from Stanford University Graduate School of Business.
Kendall Hoxsey-Onysko, a fifth generation grapegrower in Napa Valley, is the Business Manager for Yount Mill Vineyards and Napa Wine Company. Managing over 15 varieties spread across 600 acres, her family takes pride in producing three distinct brands, Ghost Block, Oakville Winery, and Elizabeth Rose, from their organically certified vineyards. She holds an MBA in Wine Business from Sonoma State University and serves on the Marketing & Communications and Industry Issues committees.
Caleb Mosley has been growing wine grapes since 2006, beginning his career at Ridge Vineyards Monte Bello after studying at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. Landing in the Napa Valley just in time to tackle the challenging 2011 vintage, Caleb has been involved in every aspect of grape growing on numerous vineyards from Carneros to Calistoga. Caleb was elected co-chair of the NVG Member Services Committee in 2016, where he plays an active role in planning the Organic Winegrowing Conference and Sustainable Vineyard Practices Series amongst many other NVG educational offerings. He has been working for Michael Wolf Vineyard Services since 2016 and is currently their Senior Viticulturist.
After attending Columbia University, Dan went to work for Time, Inc. While there, he earned his MBA from NYU and worked his way up the ranks towards a promising future in magazine publishing. Dan learned wine, by walking his expense account with advertising clients through the lists of Manhattan’s top restaurants. When the Wall Street Journal tried to poach him, Dan took a moment to reflect. Deciding a change of life was in order, he jettisoned to Sicily for a year, where he interned at Valle dell’Acate. While Dan’s intention was to return to New York to sell wine, a harvest invitation from Andy Smith at DuMOL in 2006 was too good to pass up, and Dan left the city again, this time facing west. After harvest, Andy Smith hired Dan as Cellar Master at Larkmead. The following year, Dan was promoted to Assistant Winemaker, ultimately claiming the Larkmead Winemaker title in 2012. Dan is a gifted, instinctual winemaker, and his old-world palate has guided his philosophy on wine.
Scott Snowden was five years old when the family first came to the Napa Valley. During high school, college, and graduate school, Scott worked summers at Hanns Kornell Cellars, Inglenook Winery, and Beaulieu Vineyard. He attended Washington and Lee University and the Boalt Hall School of Law at the University of California at Berkeley. He practiced law in Napa before his appointment to the bench in 1980. Scott retired as Presiding Judge of the Napa Superior Court 2005. He is now a mediator-arbitrator with the Judicial Arbitration and Mediation Service, better known as “JAMS - The Resolution Experts.” Friends and family figure Scott is half cowboy and half lawman. He regularly quotes Bob Dylan and is a managing director for Snowden Vineyards.
Arnulfo Solorio is a Partner at Silverado Farming Company. Before joining SFC, his 20-year career included vineyard management positions at Franciscan Estates and Domaine Chandon. Arnulfo is also a Director on the Napa Valley Farmworker Foundation Board, and the chair the Farmworker Education Committee.
Robin Wenzel is a Senior Vice President at Wells Fargo Bank with 25 years of experience in Commercial and Corporate Banking. For the last 15 years Robin has been focused on lending to the wine industry for domestic and global wineries, Growers and ancillary businesses. Wells Fargo has been a leading lender to the wine industry since 1955 and enjoys the distinction as the largest Agribusiness Lender and Beverage Lender in the nation. In 2017, Robin won the North Bay Business Journal Annual “Women in Business” Award and was recognized for her long-standing commitment to the wine industry and community. Robin also serves as Co-Founder and Board Member of the Wiskott-Aldrich Foundation, www.wiskott.org, a nonprofit that she began in honor of her son that provides medical research, education and financial support to children and families affected by Wiskott-Aldrich Syndrome globally. Robin received her degree in Business from the University of San Francisco with an emphasis in Finance and International studies. As a sailor and hiker, she enjoys any opportunity to enjoy the outdoors. Robin resides in Napa with her husband and three (incredibly rambunctious) sons.
Napa native, Dave Whitmer retired from the County of Napa in 2013 after 33 years of service - the last 20 years as the Agricultural Commissioner and Sealer of Weights and Measures. Dave attended Napa schools including Napa High School and Napa Valley College where he received his Associate of Arts degree before transferring to CSU Long Beach and eventually CSU Chico, graduating with a degree in Biological Sciences. In retirement, Dave is spending quality time with Loie, his wife of 38 years and doing some traveling, both domestic and international. He is passionate about working to make a difference in our community and in addition to serving on the Board of Directors of the Napa Valley Grapegrowers, is volunteering as a Guiding Coalition member of the Napa Circles Initiative, a local anti-poverty campaign; serves on the Board of Directors of Sustainable Napa County; is a member of the Napa Housing Coalition and a member of the Marketing and Asset Development Committee for the Napa Valley Community Foundation.
Amy Whiteford has grown premium wine grapes in the Napa Valley since 2001. She managed the estate vineyards and oversaw the growers for Pahlmeyer from 2002 to 2010, and then took the position of Chief Viticulturist at the prestigious Stagecoach Vineyard, where she developed and farmed 17 varieties of wine grapes for 80 winemakers. Amy now manages the estate vineyards for Dave Phinney of Bloodline Wines, and is in the process of planting 12 acres of ultra-premium Cabernet Sauvignon on her family property, Warnock Vineyards, in the Atlas Peak AVA. Amy holds a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Science from UC Santa Barbara and a Masters Degree in Viticulture from UC Davis.
John is the owner of Wilkinson Family Vineyards and managing partner of Bin to Bottle Winery. In 2005, he identified a need for a service minded, custom crush only winery and found partners who had the same sensibilities. Under his stewardship, Bin to Bottle has grown from a 700-ton winery in 2006 to over 4500 tons in 2011. John also makes his own wine from fruit off his ranch in the Oak Knoll District of Napa Valley. Wilkinson Family Vineyards is a Napa Valley Red Wine consisting primarily of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. Only 200 cases per year are produced.
After receiving his degree in agriculture business from Fresno State University, Pete spent 15 years working as a vineyard manager in the Central Coast and Napa Valley. He worked for a number of wineries, eventually managing the Napa and Lake County Vineyards for Kendall Jackson, affording him his first exposure to growing grapes for high-end wines, including the Lokoya and Cardinale brands. In founding Silverado Farming Company, Pete’s goal is to work with small estate wineries where the focus is on wine quality and not the short-term bottom line. Additionally, Pete and his partners founded the One Percent for the Community Fund, where they pledge one percent of gross revenue to at-risk children and farm worker-related issues in Napa County. Pete is currently on the Board of the Napa Valley Farmworker Foundation and was named the 2019 Grower of the Year.