Partner and chair, Wine & Beverage Alcohol Industry Practice Group, Farella Braun + Martel LLP, 899 Adams St., Ste. G, St. Helena 94574, 707-967-4000, www.fbm.com
Professional background: Attorney
Education: J.D., Arizona State University, 1997; Ph.D., Political Science, Arizona State University, 1998; M. Litt., Politics, Oxford University, 1994; M.Phil., Philosophy, University of St. Andrews, 1991; A.B., Government, Harvard University, 1989
Tell us about yourself and your company: For five years, I’ve led Farella’s renowned Wine and Beverage Alcohol Industry Practice. The wine industry is one of the most heavily regulated industries, and having an attorney who is well-versed in the ins and outs of the wine business provides a winery owner with a strong competitive advantage.
My practice involves advising privately and publicly owned wineries, vineyards and other industry-related businesses with real estate and corporate transactions, including acquisitions and dispositions, development, financing, management and leasing of winery and vineyard properties. This includes counseling clients through the various land use, environmental and beverage alcohol regulatory and diligence issues presented by wine-related development projects. Because many of my wine industry clients don’t have their own legal teams, I frequently work with clients from purchase to entitlement and continue to service them with everyday legal needs that arise.
Is there a major accomplishment in the past year or so that you would like to share? I had a baby on December 23, my second child.
What is your biggest challenge today? Growing the wine practice at Farella while still giving my clients the individual attention they have come to expect.
Words that best describe you: My son has a children’s book about a boy named Pierre who always says “I don’t care.” I think I’m the opposite of Pierre: I care a lot about everything. The only problem is that sometimes this makes it challenging to struggle all the different aspects of my life.
Who was your most important mentor? Janet Napolitano. She was the U.S. Attorney for the District of Arizona, and I was an intern in her office.
Tell us a little bit about that person: She was a great role model for a female attorney succeeding in an office that was predominantly male. I admired the fact that she was confident enough in her own abilities to be able to encourage and applaud the talents of others.
What advice would you give to a young woman entering your profession or the work world today? Be yourself — authenticity is the key to success and personal fulfillment.
Current reading: Murder mysteries
Stress relievers: Swimming, baking cookies.
Favorite hobbies: Reading, playing cars and trains with my sons.
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