Company changes reinforce Wente Family’s commitment to investing in people and continuing wine education
May 11, 2016 (Livermore, CA) – Wente Family Estates, the oldest continuously-operated family-owned winery in America, announces a series of personnel changes to support the company’s sales priorities and long-term vision to be one of the most respected wine companies in the world.
Bridget Epp is taking on the newly created role of Vice President - Fine Wine Sales and Education, where she will be responsible for leading the sales strategy of limited availability offerings in select markets. Additionally she will be responsible for developing the wine education curriculum for the Wente Family Estates sales team – a responsibility consistent with the organization’s “People First” approach to not only invest in great talent but to continually invest in the ongoing capabilities of team members. Previously, Bridget held regional sales leadership roles with Wente Family Estates.
Chris Guidice, Vice President of Sales Eastern Division, is taking on additional responsibility with an expanded team that includes Tom Lachowicz in the Great Lakes Region and Paula Witkowski in the Midwest. This includes his current responsibility for the Mid-Atlantic, Empire and New England regions for Wente Family Estates. Jennifer Price is being promoted to Director of Sales, Southwest and adds to her area of responsibility the Great Plains Region; this in addition to her responsibilities in the South Region where she has grown the business significantly in Texas, Oklahoma, New Mexico, Louisiana and Mississippi.
“We are pleased to recognize the many talents and contributions of Bridget, Chris and Jennifer,” says Carolyn Wente, CEO and Fourth Generation Winegrower. “In addition to success as measured in terms of growth in value and market share, their hard work has been accompanied by a continued focus on our core values of Respect, Integrity, Sustainability and Excellence that are important to Wente Family Estates. We want to grow, and grow in sustainable ways led by leaders who share these values.”
New to Wente Family Estates, Crystal McIntyre joins as Vice President of Sales Western Division. She previously served as Vice President of Sales and Managing Director for Fetzer Vineyards, in addition to various roles at Jackson Family Estates. McIntyre takes over for Larry DiPietro, who will retire in June after celebrating his 41st anniversary with Wente Family Estates.
“We’re thrilled to have Crystal McIntyre join our team, as she brings an incredible amount of sales and leadership experience,” says Tyson Overton, Senior Vice President of Global Sales. “Crystal has a proven track record of success growing brands and leading highly effective teams. We needed someone of her caliber as she has some big shoes to fill with the retirement of Larry DiPietro. Larry will be missed and we thank him for the tremendous legacy he has established over his 40+ years at Wente Family Estates.”
About Wente Family Estates: Founded in 1883, Wente Family Estates is the oldest continuously-operated family-owned winery in the country, now owned and managed by the fourth and fifth generations of the Wente family. The winery draws from Estate vineyards in the Livermore Valley, San Francisco Bay and Arroyo Seco, Monterey appellations to create an outstanding portfolio of fine wines. Wente Vineyards is distributed in all 50 states and in over 70 countries worldwide. In 2010, Wente Vineyards was among the first wineries to receive the Certified California Sustainable Winegrowing designation, and one of the only wineries to certify every aspect of its business. In 2011, Wente Family Estates was named American Winery of the Year by Wine Enthusiast and a Top 30 wine company by Wine Business Monthly. The year 2012 marked the 100th anniversary of the Wente family bringing Chardonnay cuttings to California. Today the Wente clone of Chardonnay is the most widely planted in California. This year the winery celebrates its 130th vintage.
Located just east of San Francisco in the historic Livermore Valley, Wente Vineyards is recognized as one of California’s premier wine country destinations. The property features wine tasting, world-class concerts, award-winning fine dining and championship golf. For more information, visit www.wentevineyards.com.