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January 12, 2012 – Santa Rosa, CA: Three new members of the Sonoma County Vintners Board of Directors for 2012 were announced by executive director Honore Comfort at the organization's annual meeting at the Vintners Inn in Santa Rosa today.
New board members include Stan Fridstein, Mulberry Trample Wine Brokerage; Bahaneh Hobel, Esq., Dickenson, Peatman & Fogarty; and Dan Kosta, Kosta Browne Winery. Officers for 2012 are President, Matt Gallo, Gallo Family Winery; and Secretary and Treasurer, Gerry Forth, Forth Vineyards.
Stan Fridstein is a partner at Mulberry Trample, a wine brokerage that specializes in placing excess wine inventory into the most discreet channels possible in a way that does not hinder long-term branding and selling efforts. A serial entrepreneur, Fridstein was co-founder and President of The Right Start, Inc., the largest specialty merchant targeting families with young children in The United States. During his career, Fridstein has provided strategic marketing consultation to clients such as The Nature Company, Discovery Channel Catalog/Discoverchannel.com, Famous Smoke Shop Catalog, AIG/SunAmerica, Earl Scheib Corporation, DaVita Corporation, Welk Resort Group, Wella Corporation, Pomona Valley Hospital Medical Center and Huntington Memorial Hospital. (Non-Voting Community Seat)
Bahaneh Hobel is an attorney in Dickenson, Peatman & Fogarty’s Alcohol Beverage group. Hobel’s practice focuses on all aspects of alcohol beverage law, including state and federal licensing and regulatory compliance for wineries, breweries, distilled spirits plants, importers, wholesalers and retailers. Hobel has also had significant experience assisting local alcohol beverage trade associations and other non‐licensees with various trade practice matters at both the state and federal level. (Non-Voting Community Seat)
Dan Kosta, co-founder of Kosta Browne Winery, is a native of Sonoma County where wine became an integral part of his life at the age of 5, learning about the enjoyment of wine from his father. Later, Kosta followed his passion for food and worked for more than 15 years in fine dining, mostly at John Ash & Co. in Santa Rosa, where he eventually served as Operations Manager and Wine Director. He met winery partner Michael Browne while working there, and together they saved tip money in 1997 to start their winery. Kosta sits on the Board of Directors for the Sonoma County Harvest Fair and participates in numerous judging events such as the San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition, West Coast Wine Competition, and San Francisco International Wine Competition.
In addition to the new members and officers noted above, members of the Sonoma County Vintners Board of Directors are Jean Arnold Sessions, Hanzell Winery; Corey Beck, Francis Ford Coppola Winery; Jeff Bundschu, Gundlach Bundschu Winery; George Christie, Saini Vineyards; Dan Goldfield, Dutton-Goldfield Winery; Tom Hinde, Popcorn Wine Co.; Steve Messinger, Vinum Exports; Joel Peterson, Ravenswood Winery; Caroline Shaw, Jackson Family Enterprises; and Dan Wildermuth, Rodney Strong Vineyards.
About Sonoma County Vintners
Sonoma County Vintners is the leading voice of Sonoma County wine, dedicated to increasing awareness and improving the quality image of its wines to consumers, media, and trade locally and globally. With almost 65,000 vineyard acres planted among the county’s 15 American Viticultural Areas (AVAs), Sonoma County is considered one of the world’s premier winegrowing regions, producing an unparalleled range of varietals and wine styles. SCV has promoted this diversity and quality since 1944, and currently represents more than 175 member wineries and 25 Affiliate Members. For more information on the wines and wineries of Sonoma County, visit www.sonomawine.com.