CCA has deliberately assembled a marketing team with diverse backgrounds that include expertise in strategic marketing, new media and public relations. We are capable of developing new brands from conception, and refining and refreshing the image of better-established brands. Together, we offer a broad spectrum of experience and professional credentials to serve your organization's immediate and long-term needs.
She began her work in New York at the premium wine importing company Kobrand Corporation, where she served as Public Relations Director for a portfolio of internationally recognized brands including Taittinger Champagne, Louis Jadot Burgundies, Taylor Fladgate Ports and more. At that time, she oversaw all company media relations, co-marketing partnerships and winemaker media tours, putting her language and travel skills to great use. She was part of the team that launched and nurtured the brand Alizé de France.
She moved to Northern California to become Director of Communications for E. & J. Gallo Winery, directing corporate and internal communications, focusing on the successful re-launch of the Gallo of Sonoma brand. She then accepted a position as Senior Vice President of Magnet Communications in San Francisco, where she built an impressive roster of wine industry clients including Perrier Jouet & G.H. Mumm Champagne brands, St.Supéry Winery & Vineyards, Fetzer Vineyards, Fess Parker Winery and Robert Mondavi Imports among many others.
In the spring of 2003, Kimberly launched her own company, Charles Communications Associates in San Francisco, specializing in strategic branding, corporate social responsibility with a focus on launching, reinvigorating and repositioning of brands.
Kimberly holds a B.A. in History & Government from Georgetown University and also successfully completed the Diploma course for the Wine & Spirit Education Trust in London in 1997, one the early group of American candidates to attempt this challenging exam. She is a member of Slow Food and Les Dames d'Escoffier San Francisco. She is also a Trustee of the River Network. She served as Vice President of the Society of Wine Educators (2003-2005) and as board member for five years.
When she has time to breathe, Kimberly loves to travel and live it up. Her travel bug has fueled her interest in classic food and wine, sake, arak and single malt scotch. Her excursions to Russia, Lebanon, Iceland, Japan and Greenland continue to inspire her thirst for exotic locales but in her restored 1900 Victorian home in San Francisco’s Mission District, she has found a home, where she can share her love of cooking and entertaining with a stimulating group of friends and colleagues. She is a devotee of yoga and endeavors to stay centered in an ever-changing world.
Restaurant: Cotogna in San Francisco & Septime in Paris
City to visit: San Sebastien
Place to shop: Le Marche aux Puces, Cligancourt or any funky flea market around the globe
Musician: Killian MacGeraghty
Wine: Chateau Cheval Blanc 1982
Beer: Supporting our local brews in Northern California, Little Sumpin' by Lagunitas - an IPA with a hoppy kick!
Book: Journey of Souls
Film: The Lives of Others
On an eye-opening post-dissertation trip to Mendoza, she had an epiphany that convinced her to move back to California and immerse herself completely in the wine industry. She honed her wine writing skills as Brand & Communications Manager for JJ Buckley Fine Wines, overseeing sales and marketing strategy and putting her research skills to great use. And she fell in love with Bordeaux after traveling to the region to participate in its annual En Primeur campaign.
After successfully completing the Level 3 certification for the Wine & Spirit Education Trust, she cut her teeth on the production end, working harvest at Larkmead Vineyards in Calistoga.
Alex also holds a B.A. in History & Communication Studies (with minors in Political Science & Archaeology) from Loyola Marymount University. An avid runner, yoga addict and rookie surfer, Alex likes to spend her spare time working up a sweat so she can better justify her other hobby - exploring all of the Bay Area’s world-class culinary delights!
Restaurant: La Ciccia in San Francisco, Great Queen St & Haandi in London
City to visit: Marrakesh
Place to shop: London’s Borough Market
Musician: Led Zeppelin
Cuisine: Indian and Northern Italian
Wine: Pontet-Canet, grower Champagne, most Jura and lately anything from Sicily and Sardinia
Beer: Woodfour Brewing Company's "Sour Farmhouse Ale"
Book: Anna Karenina
Film: Life is Beautiful, The Royal Tenenbaums
Philosopher: Yann Martel, Oscar Wilde
Paul attended high school in Napa and then the University of California San Diego, where he gained a BA in Communication, a Business Minor, and surprisingly little surfing experience. He interspersed his schoolwork with event and marketing positions for the Sonoma Valley Vintners and Growers Alliance every summer from 2009 to 2016 executing the Sonoma Wine Country Weekend and Harvest Wine Auction. His work exposed him to media management, luxury product copywriting, VIP hospitality, and the SVVGA’s first DTC deployment, which Paul led.
At CF Napa Brand Design, Paul wrote brand stories, back label copy, digital copy, and award submissions for firms of every size. From Kobrand Corporation to smaller family labels, tireless research and precise copyediting were invaluable to effective messaging efforts. Paul also gained followers and search positions by auditing and managing digital accounts and websites.
Aside from wine and travel, Paul’s other prime interests have been theatre (Lifetime Member of the International Thespian Society) and golf (inconsistent at best). He lives in San Francisco, but still loves to visit the valleys he grew up in.
Restaurant: Pic Nic in Sitges, Spain
City to visit: Rome
Place to shop: La Boqueria Market, Barcelona
Musician: Merle Haggard
Wine: 1995 Gloria Ferrer Carneros Cuvée
Beer: Voll Damm
Book: Our Man in Havana by Graham Greene
Philosopher: Mark Twain
Senior Strategic Consultant
Amelia’s career in communications and marketing began in 1994 at Ogilvy & Mather’s London office where she managed the Guinness UK account. After three years as an ex-pat and plenty of dark beer, she felt the pull of her hometown, and returned to San Francisco to work with Visa International managing their global brand communications for the next three years.
As a Bay Area native, it was hard not to cultivate an interest in the wine industry. She had grown up around wine and fell in love with the living nature and stories surrounding the evolution of a vineyard. Armed and ready to move into a new industry, in 2000, she took a leap of faith and started her first “gig” in the wine industry working for Kimberly Charles who at the time was VP at Magnet Communications owned by Havas overseeing major winery accounts. Kimberly came highly recommended by mutual friend and wine writer, Andy Blue, who promised she would be the perfect mentor.
After cutting her proverbial teeth at Magnet, in early 2002, Amelia took a position with Maisons Marques & Domaines, the US subsidiary for Champagne Louis Roederer where she managed public relations for their global wine portfolio (Champagne Cristal, Ramos Pinto, Ladoucette, Ets Moueix) until 2006. She was responsible for public relations for over twenty-esteemed wine brands and quickly became adept within the imported wine arena.
Ready for a change of pace (and with a two year old daughter now in tow), Amelia resumed freelance employment with Charles Communications Associates in addition to managing a number of her own accounts. The change was perfect…great brands with less travel.
As the wine industry grew, so did her portfolio of clients. After ten years of working solo she decided that she wanted to be part of a team again and once again joined forces with her friend and mentor, Kimberly Charles whose agency was burgeoning with both domestic and international business. Amelia complements the strong team at CCA with her deep knowledge of the wine business, long lasting media relationships as well as her stellar work with wine associations such as Mendocino Winegrowers Inc and West Sonoma Coast Vintners.
When Amelia is not working with clients, she spends time with her family in the Yorkville Highlands at the family vineyard where they grow 15 acres of Pinot Noir or visiting her parents in the beautiful Napa Valley. In winter months, she enjoys teaching her young kids to ski and more recently, has started a USTA tennis team at Boyle Park in Mill Valley.
Amelia graduated from the University of California at Berkeley with a degree in the History of Art. In the fall of 2003 she received her advanced certificate from WSET (Wine & Spirits Education Trust) and continues her wine knowledge by serving on various wine committees. She lives with her husband, twelve year-old daughter, 7year old son, a fluffy white dog named Lola and a cellar in constant need of replenishment.
Restaurant: Stone & Embers, Anderson Valley
City to visit: Cairo
Place to shop: Kathmandu
Musician: Carole King
Cuisine: Thai and Indian
Wine: Talisman, Adastra Vineyards and a 1970 Marc Brédif Vouvray
Cocktail: Slightly dirty martini up with one Mezzetta olive
Book: Birdsong by Sebastian Faulks
Strange but Intriguing Film: The Lobster
Philosopher: Any philosopher that has a quote in a fortune cookie (among others).
Organizational Development & Operations Consultant
Richelle was born into an Italian American family and grew up on the Jersey Shore. She moved to California in 2003 to pursue a career in the wine business. Richelle’s passion for wine sparked when she was a bartender at an Italian restaurant in Philadelphia while going to school to earn her B.A. in Business Marketing from St. Joseph’s University. After graduation, Richelle traveled to Italy in search of inspiration and found it while drinking copious amounts of Italian wine and limocello on a patio overlooking the Tuscan Hills with her brother.
When she returned to the U.S., Richelle moved to the Napa Valley to further her wine education and career. Richelle attended the Greystone Wine Program at the Culinary Institute of America in St. Helena and earned her Sommelier Certification from the Court of Master Sommeliers. While living in Napa, Richelle was the Wine Director at The Carneros Inn. Her career eventually led her to move to San Francisco where she began working in marketing and sales for Broadbent Imports. Richelle also spent time working for Indy Wines and American Wine & Spirits where she was a top performer.
After spending 10 years in the wine business, she was ready to pursue another passion, psychology. Richelle went back to school and earned a M.A. degree in Clinical Counseling Psychology from Alliant International University in San Francisco. Today, Richelle works as a Mental Health Clinician with foster children and their families at Alternative Family Services in Oakland. She also has a private therapy practice in Berkeley where she provides mental health counseling to children, teens and adults in the LGBTQI community.
Richelle keeps her toes dipped in the wine business by working with Kimberly and her team at Charles Communications Associates. She has been working as their Organizational Development & Operations Consultant since 2012.
Richelle is also trained in Psychological First Aid by the Red Cross and provides counseling and support to victims following disasters. In her spare time Richelle advocates for social justice issues at city council meetings and serves on various boards in the mental health field.
And last, but certainly not least, Richelle has an imaginative and fun-loving young son named Max who lights up her life and reminds her each day that playing is just as important as work.
Restaurant: Acquerello in San Francisco
City to visit: Florence, Italy
Places to shop: Online
Musician: Mariah Carey (You can judge a little…)
Wine: Altesino Brunello di Montalcino, Chateau Musar
Beer: The Rare Barrel (Berkeley, CA)
Cocktail: Tommy’s Margarita (handmade in San Francisco)
Book: Goodnight Moon (with my son)
Film: The Wizard of Oz
Philosopher: Sarah Margaret Fuller
Born in San Francisco and educated in and around New York City, Annalee Lanier has been working as an artist and a designer in various capacities for 15 years. Trained in fine art at New York’s Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art and at the Gerrit Rietveld Academie in Amsterdam, Annalee’s experience includes mural painting, billboard design, illustration, portraiture, custom wallpaper design, print design and fine art photography. Annalee is currently working as a graphic designer at Paper City magazine in Houston, Texas, though she plans to return to the Bay Area before too long. In her free time, you will find her singing, dancing and misbehaving. A lifelong lover of language and culture, Annalee travels as far and wide as time permits.
Working with CCA, whether it's for collateral, web, logos, you name it, she has an uncanny way of imagining a look and design even better than could be imagined. We like to call her the Wizard of Ahhhs.
Restaurant: Fang, SF and Coco's Cantina, Auckland
City to Visit: Havana!
Place to Shop: Pilpeled.com
Musician: Tsegue-Maryam Guebrou
Cuisine: Gourmet Ramen
Wine: Russian River Valley Pinot Noir
Book: Grendel (John Gardner)
Philosopher: Louis C.K.
Marsha is a board member of Les Dames d’Escoffier, New York City Chapter, an international association of leading women in the hospitality field and serves as a trustee to CancerCare©. She holds a Masters degree in Medieval French literature from Kent State University.