Monday Workshops – September 26, 2016 – Session I: 1:30 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.


Craig Root
President – Visitor Management Resources

Craig Root has over 30 years of experience working with tasting rooms: first as staff and successful manager and then twenty years as a tasting room consultant. As a consultant, he has helped to create more than 100 tasting rooms and 200 wine clubs throughout the US and Canada. He has also analyzed and advised dozens of current operations. He is the only person that teaches Tasting Room Design and Management at UC Davis.

Lesley P. Berglund
Chairman, The WISE Academy

Lesley is an accomplished wine industry entrepreneur and CEO with a focus on change management. Over the past 23 years in the wine industry she has started up the equivalent of nine new businesses, acquired and integrated four companies and led during periods of dramatic change. As co-founder and former CEO of the Ambrosia Wine Catalogue/the Winetasting Network (which she sold in 2004) she has deep experience in consumer direct marketing of fine wines. Lesley has served on the board of ten wine-related companies and trade associations, and serves as co-chair of both the Wine & Beer Industry Technology Symposiums. In 2008, she co-founded the WISE Academy, which provides education, training and certification for winery consumer direct professionals. In 2014 she co-founded SOLVE Services which provides financial analysis, planning and decision support services for wineries. Today she spends most of her time coaching winery leaders through growth related challenges and opportunities. Lesley has a BA from Wesleyan University and a MBA from Harvard Business School. She is also a third-generation Napa Valley native from a grape growing family.

Matt Wood, Partner
Proof Loyalty

Matt has recently followed the entrepreneurial spirit that has characterized his career, by joining forces with Chris Branes to launch ProofLoyalty, a SaaS based provider of a mobile app platform, specifically designed for the wine industry, that lets wineries meet customers where they increasingly live – on their phones. The platform is an integrated mobile solution that offers M-commerce, marketing, communications and loyalty.

Matt’s wine career started in his early thirties and found a home behind the tasting bar at Franciscan, just before its acquisition by the then Canandaigua Wine Company. Quickly establishing a reputation as an innovative manager, Matt managed all aspects of DTC for the burgeoning Constellation Brands. By the time he left in 2008, he was responsible for 14 tasting rooms in three states, multiple wine clubs with over 18k members and 11 e-commerce sites. This experience gave him great insight into managing diverse teams and more importantly within the wine industry, managing different brands with different price points, different brand identities and DNA. During his tenure at Constellation, Matt developed several concepts that are now considered standard industry practice, such as multiple club levels, events in market and telemarketing, amongst others.

Following Constellation, Matt spent time as GM of the wine business, successfully managing the acquisition and integration of the Geerlings & Wade business and driving the business to its first profitable year in many. Then Matt managed the DTC business of Foley Family Wines, driving the business to a 50% increase in profits in less than a year.


George Coope
Senior Director of Strategy & Analysis, Zepponi & Company

George Coope, Senior Director of Strategy & Analysis, has more than twenty-five years of investment banking and advisory experience in the wine, beer and distilled spirits industries. Prior to joining Zepponi & Company, George held senior roles at several boutique investment banks in San Francisco and was a founding member of the consumer practice group at Hambrecht & Quist LLC. George also worked in R&D and operations at Miller Brewing Company. George is a former director of Patz & Hall Wine Company and The Coppola Companies.

George graduated with a BA from Stanford University, an MS in food science with a specialization in viticulture and enology from UC Davis and an MBA from Harvard Business School. Prior to attending UC Davis, he worked as an apprentice to the general manager and winemaker at Domaine Comte Georges de Vogüé in Chambolle-Musigny, France. George holds Series 7 (General Securities Representative), 24 (General Securities Principal) and 63 (California Securities Representative) securities registrations and a certified valuation analyst (CVA) designation from the National Association of Certified Valuators and Analysts.

David Faris, CPA, CGMA
Vice President – Corporate Development, F. Korbel & Bros., Inc.

Dave is a CPA and has been involved in the wine industry for over 35 years. He is an executive with Korbel Champagne Cellars and for the past 20 years has been responsible for executing Korbel’s Merger & Acquisition activities.

Dave received his Master’s Degree in Taxation from Golden Gate University and a Bachelor’s Degree in Management from Sonoma State University.

Russ Joy
Vice-President & General Manager, Patz & Hall

As vice president and general manager of Patz & Hall, Russ is leading the transitional operations of the company into Ste. Michelle Wine Estates, who purchased the brand in April. Prior to that, as president and general manager of Patz & Hall for the last 11 years Russ worked alongside the winery’s four founding partners—Donald Patz, James Hall, Anne Moses and Heather Patz—overseeing all areas of operations along with strategic planning.

Russ has been CFO for both Sebastiani Vineyards, Inc. and Viansa Winery, and was the director of finance for Allied Domecq Wines (Wine Alliance), where he helped to oversee brands like Clos du Bois, Callaway Vineyard and Winery, William Hill Winery and Atlas Peak.

Originally from New York State, Russ obtained his CPA certificate while working with Deloitte & Touche prior to entering the wine industry.


Armand Gilinsky, Jr.
F.J. Korbel Professor of Wine Business, Sonoma State University and Founding Editor, Wine Business Case Research Journal

Armand Gilinsky, Jr. is the F.J. Korbel Professor of Wine Business at Sonoma State University, where he has taught Strategy and Entrepreneurship since 1998. In past years he has served as Director of SSU’s Entrepreneurship Center, Wine Business Program, and Small Business Institute. He previously held teaching appointments at the Harvard Business School, CSU East Bay, and Northeastern University. He has lectured on wine business strategy and entrepreneurship to doctoral students and faculty at the Universities of Bordeaux, Strasbourg, Florence, Siena, and Macerata. He has also worked as part of a study team to create a global marketing strategy for the Georgian national wine industry, a project funded by the World Bank.

Dr. Gilinsky has had extensive consulting experience in strategic planning, competitive strategy, and developing business plans. He has authored over 50 published business case studies and several articles on entrepreneurial strategy and socially responsible entrepreneurship. He is a past president of the North American Case Research Association, a group of some 500 case researchers from universities around the globe. In 2013, he received the Bernie and Estelle Goldstein Award for Excellence in Scholarship from Sonoma State. He currently serves as the founding editor of the Wine Business Case Research Journal.

He holds the Ph.D. in Business Policy from Henley Management College/Brunel University (London) and A.B. and A.M. degrees from Stanford University.

Marieshka Barton (MBA ‘16 and Student Editor), Sonoma State University

Marieshka Barton is a Fall 2016 Sonoma State University (SSU), Wine MBA candidate. She has taken great pride in helping to launch SSU’s Wine Business Case Research Journal’s inaugural issue and enjoys editing the cases as well as learning from them. After graduation, Ms. Barton will pursue her PhD in Marketing where she will continue to focus on wine business needs.


Robert Boyd
CFO, Joseph Phelps Vineyards

Robert Boyd came to work for Joseph Phelps Vineyards in the spring of 2011 following a decade of both domestic and International Finance and Audit responsibilities for Jackson Family Enterprises, most recently Vice President of International Finance.

A native of Scotland, Robert is a Chartered Accountant and a graduate of Strathclyde University in Glasgow. He has overall financial responsibility for Joseph Phelps Vineyards.

Robert enjoys both watching and playing soccer (or football as he calls it), and spending time with friends over good food and wine. Robert and his wife Claire reside in Santa Rosa with their two children.

David Pardes
Tax Partner – PricewaterhouseCoopers

David Pardes is a Tax Partner at PricewaterhouseCoopers based in San Francisco. David has been part of the Private Company Services practice since he arrived at PricewaterhouseCoopers and is responsible for tax consulting and compliance services to numerous agricultural companies that include vineyards and wineries, olive oil producers, and cattle ranches. Additionally, David has experience working with high net-worth individuals, which has enabled him to advise on the implications of shareholder investments and the transfer of wealth to future generations. David has been a guest speaker at UC Davis Extension and Walla Walla Community College to assist in teaching a course on Accounting for Vineyards/Wineries. David has obtained his MBA with a concentration in Finance from Boston University, an MS in Taxation from Golden Gate University and prior to working at PWC worked for several years within the finance department of a large multi-national corporation.

Michael McCarvel
Assurance Senior Manager – PricewaterhouseCoopers

Mike McCarvel is a Senior Manager at PricewaterhouseCoopers based in San Francisco. Mike has been a part of the Private Company Services practice since 2003 and is responsible for providing audit and assurance services to a wide variety of industries including agriculture, farming, distribution, manufacturing and professional services. Mike advises his clients around the many business challenges that they face and on the application of accounting and reporting guidance in complex areas including business acquisitions, share-based compensation and the provision for income taxes. Mike is passionate about serving clients in the private company industry and enjoys the variety of experience that brings.

Mark Richmond, CFP
Registered Principal/Financial Advisor

A 32-year veteran financial advisor and Certified Financial Planner serving the Napa Valley since 1986. NASD Series 7, 24 & 63 and California Life Agent licensed investment representative. Past-president, Napa Valley Economic Development Corporation (NVEDC), Napa Chamber of Commerce and Kiwanis Club of Napa. Treasurer, Napa Valley Vine Trail Coalition.

Monday Workshops – September 26, 2016 – Session II: 3:30 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.


David Freed
Chairman – The Silverado Group

David I. Freed is a former tax and corporate attorney with undergraduate and law degrees from the University of California, Berkeley. David practiced law at Tobin & Tobin in San Francisco for more than 15 years before transitioning to a full-time focus on vineyard and winery investments.

In 1988, David organized UCC Vineyards Group to consolidate all wine-related activities into a single company with properties in Napa and Sonoma. In 1991 Mr. Freed relocated the company offices to Napa, California. The, in 2004 UCC merged into Silverado winegrowers, LLC (SWG) resulting today in a company with over 2,000 acres in the coastal regions of California.

In 1992, UCC helped organize the first Wine Industry Financial Symposium, which has become an annual event. In 1995, an additional event was launched in the Central Coast area, which is now known as the Central Coast Insights program and a year later the Vineyard Economics Seminar was launched in Napa.

In 1994 David Freed organized Silverado Partners in association with Michael Moone, George Vare and Richard Lemon which provided the equity for the sale/leaseback of the Callaway Vineyards in Temecula, California. In January 1996, Silverado Partners participated in the acquisition of the Beringer Wine World Estates from Nestle International in association with The Texas Pacific Group (now TPG Capital). The Silverado Partners also facilitated the purchase of Chateau St. Jean Winery and Stag’s Leap Winery by Beringer.

In October 1997 David and Mark Couchman organized Silverado Premium Properties, LLC (SPP) in association with Colony Capital, Inc. And principals of the Texas Pacific Group and served as its Chairman. Under the direction of Mark Couchman, its President, SPP grew in excess of 10,000 acres of premium wine grape vineyards in California’s coastal counties. In October 2012 TIAA-CREF became the sole owner of SPP and SWG.

Sean Maher
Managing Director & Founder, Aspect Consumer Partners

Sean Maher is Managing Director & Founder of Aspect Consumer Partners and has over 20 years of experience in mergers & acquisitions, with a strong focus on strategic advisory in consumer products, beverage and real estate sectors.

Sean’s transaction experience includes a wide variety of strategic and financial advisory assignments. To date, he has been involved in over $2 billion in M&A transactions. Prior to founding Aspect Consumer Partners, Sean spent over 20 years at Maher Advisors where he was the Founder and President. While at Maher Advisors, Sean worked for clients such as LVMH, MetLife, WR Hambrecht, Federated Insurance, Beringer, CalPERS, Commonfund, and Jackson Family Wines. Prior to starting Maher Advisors, Sean worked for Cushman & Wakefield, a New York-based Rockefeller Group company, where he specialized in commercial leasing and investments.

Sean received his Bachelor of Arts in International Relations from UCLA and received his MBA from St. Mary’s College. Sean is the current Board President of the St. Helena Boys & Girls Clubs of St. Helena & Calistoga. He is also on the Advisory Board of the Pellegrini Wine Company.

Samantha Foster
VP – Food & Agribusiness Sr. Relationship Manager, Rabobank

Samantha’s commercial banking career began at Wells Fargo Bank in Salinas, CA where she focused on agriculture and manufacturing companies. Returning to the Bay Area, she continued her commercial banking career while working at Banque Nationale de Paris, First Bank and Bank of the West before coming to Rabobank in early 2013. Samantha’s passion for wine, food and local agriculture has contributed to the growth and success of Rabobank’s North Coast Food & Agribusiness Group.

Megan Beck
VP Food and Consumer Group, BMO

Megan Beck is a Vice President in the Food & Consumer Group at BMO Harris Bank and has 10 years of banking experience. Her primary focus is client relationship management of a variety of companies across the food, agriculture and beverage sectors. She joined BMO in 2007 and in 2013; relocated from Chicago to San Francisco to join Bill Bishop’s team with focus on corporate banking for food and wine companies on the West Coast. Currently, she helps manage over $300MM of capital commitments to the wine industry.

Megan graduated summa cum laude from Ohio University in June 2006 with a Bachelor of Business Administration in Finance and Marketing. She also completed the UC Davis Graduate School of Management Wine Executive Program in 2014.

Carlos Lua
Vice President and Senior Relationship Manager, Wells Fargo Bank

Carlos Lua is a vice president and senior relationship manager for the Wells Fargo Commercial Banking Group in the North Coast Region. He has more than 16 years of experience in meeting the financial needs of middle-market companies – businesses with annual revenues ranging from $20 million to $500 million – in a wide variety of industries, with a particular focus in the wine, food and beverage space.

Carlos holds a bachelor’s degree in Economics from the University of California at Davis. He is a graduate of Wells Fargo’s Credit Management Training Program (CMTP). He has also completed a leadership program in partnership with the UCLA Anderson Graduate School of Management.

Carlos is a past board member for the California Human Development Corporation and the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Sonoma County. Carlos has been a resident of Sonoma County for 39 years. He currently lives in Windsor with his wife and 3 children.


William Vyenielo
Sr. Business Consultant, Moss Adams

Bill has been working with clients in the wine industry for more than 25 years, and has been solving operational challenges for winery clients since 2006. He works with owners and managers to successfully develop and manage their winery operations and build their brands, providing guidance in strategic planning, sales and marketing, and winery and vineyard development.

Prior to joining Moss Adams, Bill held executive management positions managing estate winery operations for businesses ranging from start-ups and turnarounds to highly successful winery businesses. Earlier in his career, he was a lender with a national credit firm, where he was involved with large, complex loans and financing a diverse array of agricultural operations, including dairy, cattle, rice, hay, row, and tree crop operations. Bill earned his BS in Animal Science from the University of California, Davis and MBA from Pepperdine University.

Cathy Huyghe
Co-Founder, Enolytics – Wine Columnist,

Cathy Huyghe is the co-founder of Enolytics, which provides big data services to the wine industry. She is also the author of the award-winning book, Hungry for Wine: Seeing the World through the Lens of a Wine Glass, which has received positive reviews from publications ranging from the Wall Street Journal to NPR to the Village Voice. Huyghe writes for about the business and politics of the wine industry, and she was a finalist in 2016 for the IWSC Wine Communicator of the Year award.

Huyghe’s writing has appeared in print and online for both general-interest and wine industry publications including the Harvard Business Review network, The Atlantic, Decanter, DailyBeast, The Boston Globe, the Washington Post, Wine Enthusiast, GlobalPost,, and Daily Candy. She has also been featured on the BBC, WNYC, WGBH, and Nevada Public Radio.

Find her online at and at

Matt Shore
Vice President of Product Strategy, Adaptive Insights

Matt is currently vice president of product strategy at Adaptive Insights, where his charter is to articulate and guide product vision and direction across the Adaptive Suite. Matt spent the past two decades in the data management and analytics space in R&D, strategy, and solutions delivery. He started two analytics software companies and made seminal contributions to the product offerings of Oracle, Hyperion, and Adaptive Insights. He also drove several large-scale CPM implementations in high tech, bio-tech, and CPG industries.


Tammy Boatright
Founder VingDirect, Moderator

Prior to founding VingDirect in 2009, Tammy served as the head of Foster’s Wine Estates U.S. Direct to Consumer division. In this role, she was acting President of Windsor Vineyards from 2005-2007 and President of International Wine Accessories from 2004-2007. Windsor Vineyards is the largest U.S. shipper of wine direct to consumer and utilizes outbound telemarketing as the primary sales channel. Tammy has 20+ years direct marketing and general management experience, beginning with her position at Collin Street Bakery in 1990 as General Manager of Cryer Creek Kitchens, a producer of specialty baked goods. She is a frequent speaker at industry conferences. VingDirect is the recipient of the North Bay Business Journal’s 2014 award for direct to consumer in the wine industry.

Paul Mabray,
Co-Founder, Vintank

Paul has been in the wine and spirits industry for over twenty years. He has worked for Napa Ale Works, Niebaum-Coppola, WineShopper/ and also was the North American Beverage Consultant for Sumitomo Corporation of America from 2002 through 2005. He founded Inertia in 2002 as one of the first major companies established to bridge the barrier between wineries and their customers. He was CEO from 2003 until 2008 creating the largest and most powerful e-commerce platform for the wine industry, the Rethink Engine.

Under his leadership, Inertia created incredible new products for the wine industry to help open up the ability to sell and market direct including the innovative Direct to Trade, ReThink Compliance, Brix Open Source CMS, Marketplace Enablement, and many more. For his last six months at Inertia, Paul was Chief Strategy Officer and EVP of Business Development in charge of creating key strategic direction, business development, and mergers and acquisitions. Inertia successfully evolved into and is the foremost leader for enabling direct to consumer for the wine industry. TMRW Engine is a continuation of his desire to help revolutionize the wine industry by bridging the gap between wine and the digital world.

A four time American Wine Blog Awards finalist, he has also been a guest lecturer at UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business, UC Davis and many other symposiums, seminars, blogs, and periodicals for his leadership in the wine industry.
Paul formerly sat on the Board of Directors for the wine business social network which was sold to FOHBOH, and the Board of Advisors for,, and (which was purchased by TMRW Engine). He now is on the Board of Directors for the

David Barringer
Co-Founder Naked Winery

Former Silicon Valley marketing executive (Intel, Cypress, Philips, Toshiba), present day ski instructor Mt. Hood Meadows and President of Naked Winery. Naked Winery’s mission is to cut America’s divorce rate in half by inviting couples to shut off all of “the electronics” and share a glass of wine with each other nightly. David now spends most of his time in Hood River, Oregon with sons Joshua and Jason and wife Jody.

Marci Ikeler
CEO, Little Arrows

As the CEO of Little Arrows, Marci is obsessed with creative social media that drives real business results. Little Arrows sticks up for social and put it front-and-center, integrating it into growing brands’ marketing and business strategies in ways that are both creative and accountable. We have deep roots in the wine industry and are passionate about bringing the world of wine to social!

Marci has spent the past 17 years designing, building, and marketing digital experiences. In her work, she seeks to identify places where real behavior and technology intersect, and to strategize solutions that take advantage of these opportunities. She is also widely recognized as a thought leader in digital strategy in the communications industry, speaking at events such as SXSW and Cannes and teaching several courses at Miami Ad School.



Andrew Bassak
Partner, Mannatt, Phelps & Phillips; LLP, Moderator

Andrew Bassak’s litigation and trial practice focuses on the resolution of a broad array of multifaceted commercial disputes in federal and state courts, including class actions and multidistrict litigation. His clients are leaders in their respective industries, and include businesses involved in the manufacture or sale of consumer and commercial products and/or services, clients in the real estate and financial services sectors, and clients with intellectual property disputes. He is skilled in the resolution of intricate California real estate and finance disputes, and often litigates or negotiates workouts of failed transactions, resolves concerns of state and federal agencies, and assists clients in navigating the resolution of environmental liabilities.

Andrew has been honored with Martindale-Hubbell’s highest AV rating, and also has been repeatedly selected as a California Super Lawyer.

Paula Whealen
Principal, Water Right Specialist, Wagner & Bongisnore

Ms. Whealen is a principal with Wagner & Bonsignore, Consulting Civil Engineers, a Sacramento firm that specializes in engineering consulting related to water resources management. Ms. Whealen has over 25 years of experience in representing both private and public sector clients on issues relating to water right analysis, acquisition and defense, and litigation support. Her experience also includes representation and appearances before the State Water Resources Control Board and compliance issues involving the California Environmental Quality Act and Federal Endangered Species Act. Ms. Whealen represents agricultural entities statewide including many vineyard growers and wineries and regularly speaks to various groups in connection with water rights in California.

Dan Sumner, PhD
Frank H. Buck, Jr. Distinguished Professor, Dept. of Agricultural and Resource Economics, UC Davis

Daniel A. Sumner is Director of the University of California Agricultural Issues Center and the Frank H. Buck, Jr. Chair Professor, Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics, University of California, Davis. Sumner engages in teaching, research, and outreach on topics in agricultural economics and policy. He is the author of the Cato Trade Policy Analysis “Boxed In: Conflicts between U.S. Farm Policies and WTO Obligations.”

Sumner is the author of scores of professional articles, chapters, and reports and the author, coauthor, or editor of several books including Agricultural Trade Policy: Letting Markets Work. He has also served as chair of the International Agricultural Trade Research Consortium. Sumner is a frequent speaker on agricultural economics and policy throughout the world.

Sumner was on the Economics faculty of North Carolina State University for a decade. Before moving to the University of California in 1993, he spent several years on leave in federal government service. He was a Senior Economist at the President’s Council of Economic Advisers, Deputy Assistant Secretary, and Assistant Secretary for Economics at the United States Department of Agriculture. At USDA, he supervised the Department’s economic and statistical work and provided policy advice to the Secretary and other officials. Sumner graduated with a BS in Agricultural Management from California State Polytechnic University, San Luis Obispo. He obtained his MS in Economics from Michigan State University and has a Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Chicago.


Wine Industry Financial Symposium
24th Annual Event – General Session
Napa Valley Marriott September 27, 2016


Lisa Adams Walter
Director of Programs – Wine Industry Symposium Group

Lisa Adams Walter joined the Wine Industry Symposium Group in 2014. She brings a diverse background that includes PR, promotional marketing and writing experience in wine, travel, entertainment, high-tech, publishing, pro sports and corporate environments. Lisa opened her boutique PR agency, Adams Walter Communications (with a focus upon wine, food and the arts) 15 years ago, and simultaneously continues in that role while working as Director of Programs for the Wine Industry Symposium Group.

A “native” of California’s Wine Country, Lisa began her wine industry career in the Hospitality Center of Inglenook Napa Valley in the early ‘80s. She majored in Communication Studies at California State University Sacramento, graduating with an emphasis in PR and Advertising. Her prior professional experience includes working as the Director of Marketing and PR for Wine Business Publications, for the Napa Valley Vintners on the second Premiere Napa Valley and as the Director of Public Relations for the Sonoma Valley Vintners and Growers Alliance. She has served as the Assistant Executive Director of the Academy of Wine Communications, as well as an appointed representative on the Arts and Culture Advisory Committee to the Napa County Board of Supervisors and is a founding member of Napa County’s “100 Women Who Care.” In 2016 Lisa wrote the introduction for the Simon & Schuster hardcover book Napa Valley Cabernets.


Kathryn Archer
President – Wine Industry Symposium Group

In 1998, Kathy Archer was named President of the Wine Industry Symposium Group. In 1992, she directed the effort to organize the first Wine Industry Financial Symposium, which has become an annual event held in Napa.

In 1995, an additional event was launched for the Central Coast area, which is now an annual event known as the Central Coast Insights program. She also helped develop the annual Vineyard Economics Seminar in 1996. The Wine Symposium launched the inaugural Lodi Vineyard and Wine Economics Symposium in 2016, and in the past has helped organize the Wine Industry Technology Symposium and the first WineVision event in the ‘90s.

Ms. Archer has 30+ years of experience at UCC in the wine industry beginning a year after UCC purchased its first vineyard property in Napa’s Carneros appellation in 1982. She coordinated the start-up operations of Luna Winery in 1995, and assisted Silverado Partners in its efforts to acquire Beringer Wine Estates from Nestle in 1997.

Ms. Archer holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Buffalo. Prior to joining UCC, she taught school, worked for Planning Research Corporation, Legal Services Corporation and Tobin & Tobin in San Francisco. She was also Director of Development for a Washington D.C. based think tank.


David Freed
Chairman – The Silverado Group

David I. Freed is a former tax and corporate attorney with undergraduate and law degrees from the University of California, Berkeley. Mr. Freed practiced law at Tobin & Tobin in San Francisco for more than 15 years before transitioning to a full time focus on vineyard and winery investments.

In 1988, Mr. Freed organized UCC Vineyards Group to consolidate all wine-related activities into a single company with properties in Napa and Sonoma. In 1991 Mr. Freed relocated the company offices to Napa, California. In 2004 UCC merged into Silverado winegrowers, LLC resulting today in a company with over 2,000 acres in the coastal regions of California.

In 1992, UCC helped organize the first Wine Industry Financial Symposium, which has become an annual event. In 1995, an additional event was launched in the Central Coast area, which is now known as the Central Coast Insights program and a year later the Vineyard Economics Seminar was launched in Napa.
In 1994 Mr. Freed organized Silverado Partners in association with Michael Moone, George Vare and Richard Lemon which provided the equity for the sale/leaseback of the Callaway Vineyards in Temecula, California. In January 1996, Silverado Partners participated in the acquisition of the Beringer Wine World Estates from Nestle International in association with The Texas Pacific Group (now TPG Capital). The Silverado Partners also facilitated the purchase of Chateau St. Jean Winery and Stag’s Leap Winery by Beringer.

In October 1997 Mr. Freed and Mr. Mark E. Couchman organized Silverado Premium Properties, LLC in association with Colony Capital, Inc. And principals of the Texas Pacific Group and today serves as its Chairman. To date, under the direction of Mr. Couchman, its President, SPP owns in excess of 10,000 acres of premium wine grape vineyards in California’s coastal counties.


Robert Smiley, PhD
Professor and Dean Emeritus, Director of Wine, Graduate School of Management – University of California, Davis

Dr. Robert Smiley started his career at the Johnson Graduate School of Management, Cornell University as a professor of economics and policy. In 1989, he was appointed Dean of the UC Davis Graduate School of Management. In 2003, he left his deanship, but remained on the faculty as Professor of Management. In 2009 he retired his full time teaching position at the University. He remains as Director of Wine Industry Programs. Dr. Smiley has also served as a visiting professor of economics and management at Bocconi University in Milan, the University of Pisa, and Johns Hopkins University in Bologna, Italy.

During his tenure as dean of the Graduate School of Management, UC Davis was ranked among the top twenty public MBA programs in the nation by Business Week, The Wall Street Journal, and U.S. News & World Report. Under his leadership, the school successfully launched the Working Professional MBA program, which now boasts 580 students, and the Business Partners program, which had more than eighty companies participating.

Dr. Smiley has done consulting work for a wide variety of public and private sector businesses. His clients included Unisys Corporation, IBM, General Motors, Shearson/Lehman American Express, U.S. Department of Energy, U.S. Department of the Interior, U.S. Small Business Administration, Attorney General of the State of California, McCaw Cellular Communications, Beringer Vineyards, and Stags Leap Wine Cellars. He is a member of the board of directors for Sacramento Commercial Bank and Placer Sierra Bank (sold to Wells Fargo 6/07, no longer on Board), Calpine Containers Corporation, Cakebread Cellars, Vinperfect Inc., and Delicato Family Vineyards (2001 – 2007).

Dr. Smiley’s educational background includes two degrees from UCLA – a BS in Engineering and an MS in Business Economics. In 1973, he received his Ph.D. in Economics from the Graduate School of Business at Stanford University.

Nicholas Simmons
Wine Industry Executive Survey Intern
Graduate Student Researcher
UC Davis Graduate School of Management

Nick was born in Honolulu, Hawaii and grew up in San Diego, California. After receiving a B.S. in Chemistry from UC Santa Cruz he decided to obtain an M.S in Viticulture and Enology from UC Davis. He has worked at four wineries, including Zayante Vineyards and Winery in the Santa Cruz Mountains and Franciscan Estate in St. Helena, in vineyard, cellar and winemaking capacities. He is currently acting as vineyard manager for a 30 acre family owned vineyard in Potter Valley while he finishes his research thesis on identifying relationships between S. Cerevisiae genes, cellular lipids, metabolite production and fermentation kinetics.


Robert Trone
Co-Owner, Total Wine & More

Robert has been involved in the alcoholic beverage industry since 1982, when he worked in the beer business in Pennsylvania. Robert’s focus at Total Wine & More includes Store Operations, Supply Chain, Market Management, Human Resources, Store Construction and Design and Real Estate. Although the brothers’ roles are very different, their goals are very much the same: to provide consumers the best selection of wines from all regions of the world at the best prices and expert staff to assist them. Robert earned his bachelor’s degree from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania in 1981 and his Juris Doctor degree from the University of Pennsylvania in 1991.


Russell Miller
Vice President, RBC Capital Markets LLC

Russ Miller is an Associate at RBC Capital Markets, where he works alongside Analyst Nik Modi in covering the beverage, household personal care and tobacco industries. His team has consistently ranked towards the top of the Institutional Investor and Greenwich Associate investor surveys. Prior to joining RBC Capital Markets, Russ worked at UBS in the same capacity and earlier worked in the wealth management divisions of Merrill Lynch and Morgan Stanley. He is a graduate from Rutgers University, where he double majored in finance and economics.


Robert Nicholson
President, International Wine Associates

Robert Nicholson is a Principal of International Wine Associates (IWA), the leading New World wine industry mergers & acquisitions boutique advisory by volume and value of transactions completed. Since 1990 IWA has closed over 50 separate transactions for a combined value of over $ 1 billion, including the sale of some prominent California and Pacific Northwest estates, wine companies and vineyards.
Before establishing IWA in 1990 Robert was Vice President of Christian Brothers in California. He also held U.S. and international positions with Seagram in New York and with Louis Eschenauer in Bordeaux (when the company owned the prestigious Chateau Rauzan Segla, Chateau Smith Haut Lafitte and Chateau Olivier, among other leading Bordeaux wine estates).

Over the years at IWA Mr. Nicholson has completed numerous wine industry transactions and has worked with most of the major multinational companies (DIAGEO, Constellation, Grupo Codorniu, Moet Hennessy, Brown-Forman, Jim Beam, Gruppo Campari, Jim Beam, Heublein, Chalone, Fosters, Southcorp, Mildara Blass and others), a number of banks (Wells Fargo, European Bank, Banco Banesto), and has represented many family owned wine and vineyard estates, including Mayacamas Vineyards, Edna Valley Vineyard, Washington’s Sagemoor Vineyards, Oregon’s The Four Graces, Resonance Vineyard, Yalumba, Davis Bynum, Buena Vista, Cline Cellars, Masi, Havens, Gary Farrell, Geyser Peak Winery, Chateau Potelle, Charles Krug, Hogue Cellars, Pacific Rim Winemakers, Columbia, Covey Run, Ste. Chapelle, Errazuriz, Sonoma-Cutrer, Wild Horse, Sausal, Bonny Doon, Hangar One Vodka, Craft Distillers, St. George Spirits and others.

Robert was educated in England at Millfield and studied oenology at the University of Bordeaux under Professor Emile Peynaud. Robert is an active industry commentator at U.S. and international conferences and speaks fluent French.

Roger Nabedian
Senior Vice President & General Manager, E. & J. Gallo Winery

Roger Nabedian is the Senior Vice President and General Manager of the Premium Wine Division for the E. & J. Gallo Winery, the world’s largest family-owned winery.

Mr. Nabedian joined the Winery in 1986 and spent his first 14 years with Gallo in sales and marketing positions both in the United States and Internationally. One of his first responsibilities while working in Gallo’s International business was to introduce Gallo wines to Europe. While overseas he led the launch of the Gallo brand into Belgium, Poland and other markets.

Upon returning to the United States in 1992, and for the next seven years, Mr. Nabedian managed Gallo’s business in seventeen states throughout the country. In 1999, he relocated to Gallo’s corporate headquarters and was put in charge of marketing Gallo’s brands internationally. In 2000, Mr. Nabedian was given the responsibility of sales and marketing in the U.S. of the Company’s premium brands. The next year, as Vice President of Corporate Product Development he led the introduction of Frei Brothers Reserve and Redwood Creek.

In 2002, Mr. Nabedian was named Vice President of Operations where he oversaw a variety of Gallo’s departments including the glass plant, cellar, bottling and brandy production. Coastal operations and winemaking were added to his responsibilities two years later.

In 2005, Mr. Nabedian was chosen to head the Company’s Premium Wine Division which consists of 40 brands produced at 28 wineries around the world. It also includes more than 24,000 acres of land of which 7,500 acres are under vine. Brands he oversees include Gallo Signature Series, Louis M. Martini,
J Vineyards, Ecco Domani, Alamos, Whitehaven, La Marca, and Talbott Vineyards.

He has helped secure and lead the integration of winery acquisitions in recent years including Louis M. Martini, William Hill Estate Winery, Columbia Winery, J Vineyards and The Ranch Winery. In addition, Mr. Nabedian oversees two other key departments; Marketing Services which includes hospitality, public relations, media, creative services, and digital marketing, as well as Consumer and Product Insights which is responsible for the companies Consumer Research for Product, Package and Promotion, and new brand and product development.

Mr. Nabedian also serves on the Winery’s Executive Leadership Team. He is a graduate of Ohio Wesleyan University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in chemistry and economics.

Hugh M. Reimers
President, Jackson Family Wines

Hugh Reimers is President of Jackson Family Wines, a family-owned company focused on crafting wines of distinct character and quality. An industry veteran with two decades of experience in the wine business, Reimers leads global production, farming, sales and marketing activities for the company’s portfolio of 55 renowned wineries in California, Oregon and around the world.

Reimers joined Jackson Family Wines in 2009, and held various positions including Vice President Production and President of California Production before he was named Chief Operating Officer in 2011. He was appointed to his current role in 2015.

Previously, Reimers served as Chief Winemaker at Constellation Wines, and Vice President & General Manager for Blackstone Winery.

A native of Australia, Reimers spent several years in the Australian wine community, with expertise spanning winemaking, sales and marketing. He holds a Bachelor of Applied Science degree from the University of Adelaide, South Australia. Reimers lives with his wife and daughters in Sonoma County, California.


John Gillespie
Founder & CEO, Wine Opinions

John Gillespie is the founder and CEO of Wine Opinions, the leading wine market research firm in the U.S., which provides custom quantitative and qualitative research of U.S. wine consumers and the wine trade to wineries, wine marketers, and wine trade associations. He is the most prominent wine market research authority in the U.S. His career spans more than thirty years, and includes his leadership of Wine Market Council and direction of the council’s ongoing wine market research for two decades. Beginning his career in New York as a wine magazine editor, Gillespie has worked as a wine journalist, in the retail and restaurant trade, in marketing and communications for wineries, and as the head of the Bordeaux Wine Information Bureau and Wine Market Council. He is also a founding partner in Wine Colleagues – wine business advocates and advisors.


Glenn Proctor
Partner, The Ciatti Company

Glenn Proctor joined the Ciatti Company in 2003 and became a partner in 2007. Glenn advises wineries on supply positioning and works closely with growers and wineries in marketing their grapes and wine. He specializes in spot and contract bulk wine and grapes sales from all regions of California. He has over 23 years of experience in wine supply strategy, wine-grape quality improvement, brand strategy, and business development. Glenn was previously the Vice President of Winegrowing for Diageo Chateau and Estate Wines, and before that was a Director at Benziger/Glen Ellen Winery during its rapid growth in the early 1990’

Chris Welch
Partner, The Ciatti Company

Chris Welch joined the Ciatti Company in 1994, and began brokering bulk wine and grapes in 2003 and became a partner in the Ciatti Company in 2007. The premium and super premium segment of the California wine industry are the breeding grounds of innovation and where Chris truly excels. His consistent approach helps small and medium size wineries and negotiants achieve the innovation and growth they seek. Chris also works very closely with the Oregon Wine Industry.

Karl D. Wente
Fifth Generation Winegrower and Chief Winemaker

Fifth Generation Winegrower and Chief Winemaker Karl D. Wente is responsible for all winemaking at Wente Vineyards. 2016 will be Karl’s 17th vintage and the 15th at Wente Vineyards, working with the family’s estate-grown and certified sustainable vineyards.

“To me it is a source of pride that my family has been the committed to the soil and climate of Livermore Valley for five generations and Arroyo Seco since the 1960s. And that we have always had a philosophy of delivering thoughtfully balanced, food-friendly wine, with a sense of place,” says Karl.

Being highly-educated and experienced in both winegrowing and winemaking, Karl maintains the traditional hands-on approach of previous generations of Wente family winemakers. In the vineyards he nurtures no less than 33 grape varieties while in the winery he takes great pride in making balanced and thoughtful wines out of each of them. “Continued emphasis on innovative farming and top quality fruit are the keystones of winemaking. Great wines truly do begin in the vineyard. ” Karl says.

Since joining Wente Vineyards in the summer of 2002, Karl has overseen the production of the winery’s estate grown and small lot wines. His passion for artisanal, handcrafted wines has led to the addition of Small Lot wines, The Nth Degree series, as well as the development of a small lot winemaking facility within the main winery.

“Integrity, excellence, sustainability, and respect are truly the values that we share in my family. Integrity is simple. I can almost hear the words of Ernest Wente: ‘you’ve got nothing without your word’. And sustainability has just been a part of our DNA since Carl Wente planted his first vine back in 1883,” says Karl.

Along with his interest in the technical aspects of winemaking, Karl is also an ardent viticulturalist. And, thanks to the efforts of the previous generations, he enjoys the benefits of state-of-the-art winemaking facilities and nearly 3,000 acres of vineyard in two premier appellations. “We have a family legacy of innovation and accomplishment,” he says. “It’s a heritage that inspires me and I am honored to be part of this legacy.”

Karl grew up working at Wente Vineyards and he chose to gain experience at other wineries, starting with The Peter Michael Winery in Sonoma. That was followed by a stint at Brown Brothers winery in northern Victoria, Australia, where Karl gained southern hemisphere experience before returning home to Wente Vineyards.

Karl graduated from Stanford University with a degree in Chemical Engineering, then went to graduate school at the University of California at Davis, where he earned two master’s degrees: one in horticulture (viticulture) and one in food science (enology). Studying winemaking and viticulture at U. C. Davis is another family tradition. Karl’s father and uncle studied there, as did his great-grandfather in 1909, a year after the school was founded.

Karl is an avid skier, yogi, telemarker and mountain climber, and he loves playing tennis and basketball. He also has a passion for music, playing guitar, composing and performing with his band ‘Wolf Hamlin and The Front Porch Drifters.’


Jon Moramarco
Managing Partner, BW 166

Jon Moramarco, the managing partner of BW 166 LLC, has been in the beverage alcohol industry his entire career. He has operated as a CEO of various companies for over 20 years with net sales spanning from $50 Million to over $1 Billion. Twelve plus years of his CEO tenure was with companies focused on super premium to luxury products. The other eight years involved companies with portfolios across many price points and categories. He has had operational responsibility for production facilities and brands from 5,000 case capacity to well over 10 million cases. His responsibilities have also included wineries and wine companies in many of the major wine producing and wine consuming countries of the world.

Jon has a degree from the University of California at Davis with a mixed major in Enology, Viticulture and Agricultural Business. Prior to his executive roles he had functional responsibility at various times for production, finance, administration, marketing and sales. In his early years he started in the vineyards as a laborer and progressed through both vineyard and winery jobs until his graduation from UC Davis.

Robert Trone
CEO, Total Wine & More

Robert has been involved in the alcoholic beverage industry since 1982, when he worked in the beer business in Pennsylvania. Robert’s focus at Total Wine & More includes Store Operations, Supply Chain, Market Management, Human Resources, Store Construction and Design and Real Estate. Although the brothers’ roles are very different, their goals are very much the same: to provide consumers the best selection of wines from all regions of the world at the best prices and expert staff to assist them. Robert earned his bachelor’s degree from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania in 1981 and his Juris Doctor degree from the University of Pennsylvania in 1991.

Curtis Mann
Director of Liquor, Raley’s

Curtis Mann is a 12-year veteran of the California wine industry. He began his career at ZD Wines. He later served as tasting room manager at Baldacci Family Vineyards, during which time it was cited as one of the six best places to visit in Napa Valley by the Wall Street Journal. After earning his MBA from UC Davis’ Graduate School of Management, he assumed a number of roles in the retail and restaurant industries buying and selling wine and beer.

Curtis has completed the prestigious Wine and Spirits Education Trust diploma and is currently enrolled in the Masters of Wine program as a second year student aspiring to be one of the 32 people in the United States with this certification. He is also a wine judge at the California State and Calaveras County Fairs.

Daniel Grunbeck
EVP Client Services and Business Development, Young’s Market

Mr. Dan Grunbeck serves as Executive Vice President of Corporate Business Development & Strategy of Young’s Market Company, LLC. Mr. Grunbeck served as a Senior Vice President at Wine Strategy at Young’s Market Company, LLC. Mr. Grunbeck served as Vice President of Sales at Pernod Ricard USA Inc. since August 14, 2007. He is an 18-year industry veteran who joined Pernod Ricard from the U.S. division of William Grant & Sons, where he was Senior Vice President of Sales/National Sales Manager and Director of Sales and Marketing, Fine Wine Division. Among his other previous roles was the tenure as Senior Vice President, National Sales Manager, Seagram Chateau & Estate Wines Co.

Michael Osborn
Founder and Vice President, Merchandising,

Mike Osborn has been a pioneer in online wine retailing since founding as eVineyard in 1998. Mike leads the company’s efforts in merchandising its wine and gifts, and holds key wine industry relationships worldwide. From 1992 to 1998, he held senior management roles as VP Sales and VP Marketing for CTR Business Systems, a software and systems integration business. In 1992, Mike merged his six-year-old software business he founded as a high school student, Expert Technology Corporation, with CTR. A native of Medford, Oregon, he adores Chateauneuf-du-Pape Blanc.