Spotlight on leaders of independent wine companies

Following are profiles of the top day-to-day leaders from the Business Journal’s lists of the largest independently owned wineries under 100,000 cases, published in March, and the largest wine companies, published in May.

Listed alphabetically by company name.Hank WetzelAlexander Valley Vineyards8644 Hwy. 128, Healdsburg 95448, 707-433-7209,

Harry “Hank” Wetzel, proprietor and winemaker, and his wife, Maggie, purchased the property in 1962 from the family of Cyrus Alexander, after whom the valley is named. Their oldest son, Hank IV, launched the winery in 1975. Last year the winery shipped 162,000 cases. The operation farms 200 acres of vines.Mike BenzigerBenziger Family Winery1883 London Ranch Rd., Glen Ellen 95442, 888-490-2739,

[caption id="attachment_56517" align="alignright" width="131"] Mike Benziger[/caption]

General manager, winegrower and Tribute winemaker Mike Benziger and his wife, Mary, co-founded the winery in 1980, and since that time the family business has been a leader in environmentally friendly winegrowing and advocate for Biodynamic farming.

Last year, Benziger produced 150,000 cases. The family business farms 100 acres of vines.Jean-Charles BoissetBoisset Family Wines849 Zinfandel Ln., St. Helena 94574, 707-963-6172,

[caption id="attachment_56518" align="alignleft" width="160"] Jean-Charles Boisset[/caption]

Jean-Charles Boisset is president of Boisset Family Wines, the U.S. arm of a wine and spirits operation that among the largest wine producers in France and the U.S. Last year, the 33-year-old company made 6.5 million cases of wine globally and 750,000 in the U.S.

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