Shelley’s first taste of the wine business was at the age of 14 on the back of a tractor during harvest, picking leaves out of the bunches of grapes being dumped into the gondolas. And although she moved away to attend college at Santa Clara University where she minored in Spanish and majored in Business, summer breaks were often times spent back in the Ukiah valley working in the pear packing sheds or on the back of a tractor as a “checker” (person responsible for counting the number of grape tubs per worker dumped into the gondola).
After graduating from Santa Clara, Shelley started her career in sales with magazine publisher IDG, selling advertising space in the world of high tech. A few years later, an impromptu weekend trip (yes, it was sunny!) to the beautiful Northwest resulted in her relocation to Seattle, WA and a 10 year sales & marketing career in the music business heading up direct and indirect sales channels, artist relations, direct marketing and public relations.
Following her music “gig”, Shelley ventured into high-tech marketing for several years. Prior to joining the family business at the end of 2006, Shelley was Vice President of Worldwide Marketing for high-tech software firm Secure Computing Corporation. “Having the opportunity to apply the last 20 years of work experience to the family business is such a great feeling”, says Shelley. “Like many family businesses, the kids need to go off and prove themselves first…do their own thing. I feel so fortunate to have the opportunity to come back now and help take things to the next level.” Shelley’s current responsibilities include overseeing all national sales & distribution relationships, the Barra of Mendocino website, public relations, direct marketing and whatever else Martha asks her to do!
Shelley lives in Seattle, WA with her husband and 11 yr old son, and spends her spare time training for Triathlons, skiing, and taking pictures.
Current favorite bottle of wine: BARRA of Mendocino 2010 Pinot Noir
Favorite food: Dark Chocolate (with red wine of course!)
Favorite band: Dave Matthews Band/Big Head Todd & The Monsters/The Killers
Favorite saying/words of wisdom: “Everything happens for a reason!”