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Wente Family Estates Announces Internal Organizational Changes

13 May, 2010

Carolyn Wente Appointed CEO and Internal Promotions Announced – Securing Strategic Vision

Livermore Valley, CA – Wente Family Estates recently announced an organizational update at the 127 year-old family owned and operated company.  With a new Chief Executive Officer and company structure in place, the Wente Family Estates management team has assumed new responsibilities and titles, securing the future of the company now in its 5th generation of business.   The Board of Directors continues with the anchors of Eric, Philip and Carolyn Wente, all 4th generation family members, as well as the 5th generation of Karl and Christine Wente.

Carolyn Wente, 4th generation winegrower and Vice Chair, assumes the role of Chief Executive Officer for the family business, ensuring that the internal leadership structure is firmly rooted by the voice and experience of the Wente family.

With the new structure, all divisions of the mulitifaceted family company will roll up to three newly promoted Executive Vice Presidents: Arthur Jeanett, Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer will oversee Finance, IT and Human Resource functions; Kevin Zollinger, Executive Vice President of Winegrowing Operations will continue his successful leadership of the winegrowing and operations teams; and Amy Hoopes, Executive Vice President of Global Sales & Chief Marketing Officer will oversee the global sales teams, retail sales and hospitality businesses.  All three Executive Vice Presidents will report directly to Carolyn Wente.

Additional Changes in the Sales Organization

David Kelly, formerly Vice President of Retail National Accounts, has been promoted to Senior Vice President of National Sales and will report to Hoopes.  This is a new role within the Wente Family Estates structure, which will further the growth of the company by bringing even more focused attention to key markets.  Doug Johnson joins him as Vice President of On-Premise National Accounts and Michael Parr has been appointed Vice President of International Sales as part of Hoopes’ overarching experienced sales team.

With the new leadership, several additional reporting structures and management shifts have occurred, including Karl D. Wente’s promotion to Senior Vice President and the promotion of Lisa Bates to Senior Vice President of Human Resources. Maintaining her position as Senior Vice President of Hospitality, Christine Wente will have the added responsibility of direct management of the four Livermore Valley tasting rooms.

About Wente Vineyards

The country's oldest continuously operated family-owned winery, Wente Vineyards is led today by the fourth and fifth generations of the Wente family. More than 125 years of committed stewardship to the land has led to the development of Wente Vineyards’ Farming for the Future, a system of sustainable viticultural practices designed to produce the best quality wines with the least environmental impact.  The Restaurant at Wente Vineyards features Californian wine country fare, with a menu that celebrates seasonal and local ingredients, including produce sourced from Wente Vineyards’ magnificent herb and vegetable garden.  Located just east of San Francisco in the historic Livermore Valley, Wente Vineyards is recognized as one of California’s premier wine country destinations, featuring wine tasting, fine dining and championship golf. For more information, visit

For further information, head shots, biographies and interviews, please contact Kimberly Charles of Charles Communications Associates 415|701-9463 or Marla McLaughlin of Andrew Freeman & Company 415|781-7766.