Born in Virginia but raised in the Cleveland area of Ohio, I began my viticulture career in 1989 at Sandcastle Winery in Upper Bucks County, Pennsylvania. Between jobs and looking for something different, I came across an ad for ‘vineyard help wanted’ and thought, “well, that sounds different enough”. My new employer handed me a hoe and put me in the fields where I've been ever since. I knew nothing about grapes or wine at the time, but I fell in love with the whole process. During my three year stay at Sandcastle, I learned the basics of cool climate viticulture such as cane pruning, hilling, canopy management and harvesting as well as tractor work such as spraying mowing and cultivating. I was also exposed to many of the procedures on the crush pad and in the cellar.

From there, I moved back to Virginia where I spent two years at Oasis Vineyards as a production assistant. At Oasis, I gained further experience in all aspects of grape and wine production including méthode champenoise sparkling wine. 

I then moved on to Totier Creek Vineyards (now, First Colony Winery) in Charlottesville. I spent four years there as Vineyard Manager and Assistant Winemaker. My time at Totier Creek was invaluable. As the only employee I had the opportunity to get intimate with every aspect of production in the vineyard and winery. During my time there we won many great awards including a “Best of Show” at InterVin International for the 1995 Cabernet Franc.

After leaving Totier Creek in 1996, I took a six year hiatus from the wine industry to help run my family’s business but my heart and mind were never far from wine growing. By 2004, I found myself back in the wine industry, accepting the vineyard manger position at Rappahannock Cellars where I oversaw 22 acres of vineyards divided on three separate sites. While my primary responsibility was in the vineyard, I also spend a great deal of time in the cellar where I had the privilege to work with several award winning winemakers. During this time, I also got involved with the Virginia Vineyards Association where I am currently serving on the board of directors as President.

In 2013, after the arrival of my son Dylan, I decided it was time to slow down a bit. I wanted to enjoy the early years with him and consulting seemed like the best way to self-regulate my schedule and share what I've learned over the last 20 years in the vineyard.

I hope to be able to share some of that knowledge with you!