Sarah Andrews

Sarah Andrews is the continual improvement manager at The Wine Group. Since earning a master’s degree in environmental microbiology from San Diego State University, she has enjoyed working in the wine industry for more than 16 years, applying her knowledge in various disciplines from bottling different types of wine packages in a sanitary manner to line sanitation, research and most recently food safety systems. Andrews is part of the diverse Quality Systems team, which is responsible for packaging quality, analytical analysis, standardization, food safety and sanitation validation. She leads the food safety team for a facility in Ripon, Calif., facilitating the use of HACCP-based risk analysis principles for new and existing manufacturing processes. She helps to implement, validate and sustain GMPs (good manufacturing practices), food safety and sanitation processes, programs and training across the organization. Additionally, she works with sister facilities on their food safety and sanitation programs. Andrews also developed and manages the plant’s internal food safety and quality auditing program.

  Scott Childers

Scott Childers has two decades’ worth of production-management experience within the California wine industry. With management, business process and technical experience, Childers has had a leadership role in the manufacture of more than 100 million cases (9L) to date in the premium and super-premium wine categories.

Childers was introduced to the wine industry while studying business at California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo. Upon graduation, the Chalone Wine Group in San Luis Obispo, Calif., hired Childers to oversee the bottling production efforts for Edna Valley Vineyard and several other brands.

In 2007, Childers was recruited by Trinchero Family Estates to oversee bottling production, production maintenance and value-added packaging. Additionally, he holds a leadership role on several TFE cross-functional teams.

  Gary Fisch

The owner of Gary’s Wine & Marketplace, Gary Fisch is on an ongoing mission to de-mystify the wine tasting and buying experience for his clientele. Following the success of the original Gary’s Wine & Marketplace, which opened in Madison, N.J., in 1987, Fisch launched additional stores in Bernardsville, N.J., Wayne, N.J., and Hillsborough, N.J. The store’s website, garyswine.com, offers shipping to 37 states.

Fisch was named Retailer of the Year 2014 by Market Watch, and Gary’s Wine & Marketplace earned the Best Wine Shop award in the 2014 Jersey Choice Best of New Jersey Poll and the 2015 Wayne Magazine Reader's Poll. He has been recognized by Fox Business News, CNN, CNBC, The New York Times, Market Watch, New Jersey Monthly magazine, The Star-Ledger and USA Today.

His own line of private-label GF Wines includes Go Figure, Going Forward, Grand Finale and Fisch.

Steve Lamoureux

Steve Lamoureux is senior vice president of product innovation and design solutions at The Nielsen Co., where he leads the company’s efforts to develop design process solutions that unlock the power of design for packaged products. A firm believer in the importance of good design, Lamoureux is on a mission to elevate awareness of its importance among brand executives at leading global companies and smaller enterprises alike. He marries expertise from both the agency and brand worlds—including a successful tenure at Procter & Gamble, where he led record-breaking product launches and marketing campaigns in the health and beauty care division. Later, Lamoureux launched new products and marketing initiatives at Allied Domecq for the Dunkin’ Donuts and Togo’s brands with an uninterrupted record of revenue growth over his seven-year tenure. Finally, he led product development for Affinnova’s cutting-edge innovation technologies—including concept and design optimization— before Affinnova was acquired by Nielsen in 2014. By combining his professional brand experience, vision for design process improvement and Nielsen’s vast market data and analytical assets, Lamoureux has quickly become one of the design industry’s most influential advocates.

  Curtis Mann 

Curtis Mann is a 14-year veteran of the California wine industry, with experience in hospitality, direct-to-consumer sales and wine marketing. As the wine, beer and spirits buyer for Raley’s, he is responsible for alcohol sales across 118 stores in California and Nevada. Mann began his career at ZD Wines and later served as tasting room manager at Baldacci Family Vineyards. After earning his MBA from the UC Davis Graduate School of Management, he assumed a number of roles buying and selling wine in the retail and restaurant industries. Mann has completed the Wine and Spirits Education Trust diploma and is enrolled in the Masters of Wine program. He is also a judge at the California State and Calaveras County Fairs.

Melissa Phillips Stroud

Michael David Winery’s vice president of sales and marketing, Melissa Phillips Stroud, is the sixth generation of the Phillips family to farm wine grapes in Lodi, Calif. Phillips Stroud graduated from Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo double majors in Wine & Viticulture and Ag Business. During college she worked at Perbacco Cellars and Wild Horse Winery.

After graduation, Phillips Stroud moved to Seattle, Wash., to sell her family's wine in the Pacific Northwest, where she helped to grow Michael David’s distribution in eight states. She eventually returned to Lodi to help run Michael David Winery. She focused on managing sales in the western United States and expanding the winery's on-premise accounts.

Phillips Stroud focuses on increased sales distribution in conjunction with sales efficiencies. In 2012 she became the vice president of sales and marketing, and now she oversees the winery’s distribution network including all pricing and programming.


  David Schuemann 

David Schuemann is owner and creative director of CF Napa Brand Design. Schuemann fell in love with wine while working as a wine trainer and server. He earned a degree in graphic design from the University of Wisconsin–Eau Claire and started his career shortly after in Minneapolis, Minn. In 2000 he moved to San Francisco, Calif., and joined Addison Branding as its design director. A few years after becoming the creative director for CF Napa Brand Design, he purchased the firm, which specializes in wine, spirits and beer. CF Napa’s work has been showcased in the Museum of Modern Art, and Schuemann authored 99 Bottles of Wine, the Making of the Contemporary Wine Label.

  Kevin Shaw

Creative Director Kevin Shaw founded Stranger & Stranger in 1994. Before that, he worked for a number of creative agencies handling clients including Coca-Cola, British Airways, Coutts and Unilever. Shaw’s first job was designing wine labels for the Bibendum wine agency and was part-paid in wine (good Claret, of course). He hasn’t looked back since. Based in London’s Clerkenwell, Stranger & Stranger now has studios in New York and San Francisco, too. Stranger’s client base covers wines, beers and spirits, and is the only creative company to offer a money-back guarantee. Stranger currently works with key brand owners including Bacardi, Brown Forman and Jose Cuervo as well as mid-size and smaller brands.

  Andy Starr

Andy Starr, founder of StarrGreen (starr­green.com), is an entrepreneur, marketing manager and winemaker who provides strategy, management and business development consulting services. A resident of Napa Valley, Calif., he holds a bachelor’s degree in fermentation science from the University of California, Davis, and an MBA from UCLA.

  Mike Stroh

A native of Lodi, Calif., Mike Stroh worked in the storefront and tasting room at Michael David Winery while attending college in nearby Stockton, Calif. The experience served as his introduction to wine as well as the burgeoning local wine industry.

He went on to study business management at California State University-Long Beach and returned in 2002 to Michael David, where he was hired for a newly created marketing position. The job entailed working directly with the owners on all aspects of marketing the winery, expanding the company’s portfolio of brands and growing its direct-to-consumer reach with the creation of the Michael David wine club. Now the company’s director of marketing, Stroh has been instrumental in helping to create, develop and market some of Michael David Winery’s most recognized and iconic brands, including the rapidly growing Freakshow Cabernet Sauvignon. He is also co-owner of Freelance Wines of Lodi.

  Debbie Zachareas

As managing partner and wine buyer at the Ferry Plaza Wine Merchant, Debbie Zachareas brings a passion for teaching and enthusiasm for new wines to her customers.

By developing many of San Francisco's most innovative wine programs, Zachareas has helped to shape the wine culture of San Francisco. In addition to conceiving and developing one of San Francisco’s most innovative and extensive wine programs at Bacar restaurant, she also helped develop Ashbury Market's wine program, and EOS restaurant and wine bar. Nationally recognized by magazines such as Food and Wine and Saveur, Zachareas regularly serves as a wine competition judge and is is a regular wine critic on the wine tasting panel at The San Francisco Chronicle Food and Wine Page. She also serves as managing partner for the Oxbow Wine & Cheese Merchant in Napa, Calif.