North Bay professionals news from Accendo Cellars, Collabria Care, Exchange Bank and more

Garth Hodgdon has joined Accendo Cellars in the newly created position of director of national sales for the Napa Valley winery. Hodgdon will be responsible for the sales and strategy of domestic distribution of Accendo's cabernet sauvignon and sauvignon blanc wines.

Hodgdon has level III advanced certification from the Court of Master Sommeliers and 15 years of experience. For the past five years, he worked with Krug as U.S. brand ambassador for the Champagne house. Prior to that, he was sommelier for six years in the Thomas Keller Restaurant Group of Michelin-starred restaurants such as Per Se, The French Laundry and Bouchon, Yountville.


Linda Gibson, B.S.N., MBA, president and CEO of Collabria Care, is retiring, effective Jan. 31, the community-based health care services provider in Napa announced. The Collabria Care board of directors has appointed Director of Operations Celine Regalia, M.S.W., M.A., CCC-SLP, as interim executive director, upon Gibson's departure.

Gibson has served in this role for nine years. Prior to joining Collabria Care, Gibson was chief operating officer of St. Helena Hospital Clearlake, senior vice president of operations of St. Helena Hospital and nurse manager at Loma Linda University Medical Center in Southern California.


Chris Ann Bachtel, Alysia Corell and Kelly Lind have joined the Trust and Investment Management Department of Santa Rosa-based Exchange Bank. Bachtel and Corell are joining the bank as vice presidents and trust officers, while Lind is a trust specialist.

All three are former employees of First Northern Bank's Asset Management and Trust Services division, which was acquired by Exchange Bank. Officials stated the acquisition is part of the bank's expansion of trust and investment services into the Sacramento area. All three will be located in Exchange Bank's Roseville office.

Bachtel previously served as senior vice president and founding member of First Northern's asset and trust department, located in downtown Sacramento. Prior to her position at First Northern Bank, Bachtel was trust officer, business development officer and private client manager for Wells Fargo Bank, Bank of the West, and Santa Barbara Bank and Trust.

Bachtel earned her bachelor's degree from Wake Forest University of Winston-Salem, North Carolina. In addition, she received the professional designation of certified financial planner (CFP) in 1991, and both certified trust and financial advisor (CTFA) and accredited asset management specialist (AAMS) in 1997. She received her series 7, 63 and 65 licenses in 1999.

Corell has over 17 years of trust administration experience and previously was vice president and senior trust officer for First Northern Bank. She earned her bachelor's degree in communications from San Diego State University and was designated a certified trust and financial advisor in 2008.

Lind most recently served as trust operations administrator for First Northern, where she was responsible for supervising day-to-day transaction processing, trust accounting and securities settlement for the team. Prior to her time at First Northern Bank, Lind served as senior marketing and development associate for the Sacramento Region Community Foundation.


Friedman's Home Improvement announced several additions to its executive team.

Joe Covert this year joined Friedman's Home Improvement as vice president of merchandising. The firm stated that Covert previously worked for about 20 years at RH (Restoration Hardware), most recently as senior vice president for furniture and lighting. He holds a bachelor's degree in business administration from the University of Texas. He joined Friedman's after the retirement of Tony Corsberg after 42 years, the company stated.

Charley Johnson joined Friedman's Home Improvement in November as vice president of pro and design. The company stated that Johnson has two decades of experience in sales and operations, including multiple executive roles. He spent 14 years with Best Buy, holding positions including international director of operations based in China and national director of sales and business development. He's also worked with the leadership team of Home Depot's former Expo Design Center venture in the San Francisco Bay Area. Johnson graduated from the University of California, San Diego, with a bachelor's degree in history.

Richard Marano joined Friedman's this summer as vice president of technology, where he oversees the company's technology team, including business intelligence, infrastructure and software. The company stated that his previous positions include tenures at Levi Strauss & Company, West Marine and, most recently, Orchard Supply Hardware, where he was vice president of information technology and chief information officer. Marano earned a bachelor's degree in business administration from Upsala College in New Jersey.


Dave Elcon has been promoted to resort manager of the newly opened Vista Collina Resort and its sister Napa property, The Meritage Resort and Spa.

Prior to joining Vista Collina Resort, Elcon was director of operations at Bacara Resort & Spa in Santa Barbara. Before Bacara, Elcon was front-office manager at Loews Royal Pacific Resort in Orlando, Florida, where he achieved the highest front office market metric scores in the history of the hotel, according to the announcement. Other notable properties Elcon has helped lead include Loews Coronado Bay Resort in San Diego and The Cliffs Resort in Pismo Beach.


Mark Urioste, a former Sonoma County prosecutor and current court commissioner, has been appointed by Governor Jerry Brown to a superior court judgeship in Sonoma County. He'll fill a vacancy created by the upcoming retirement of Judge Rene Chouteau.

Urioste, 44, of Santa Rosa, worked with the Sonoma County District Attorney's Office for nearly 12 years until May, when he was appointed to serve as a court commissioner.

Urioste earned his law degree in 2002 from Lewis and Clark College School of Law in Portland, Oregon, and a bachelor's degree from the University of Connecticut. From 2003 to 2005, he served as a research attorney and judicial assistant to King County Superior Court Judge Julie Spector. Urioste briefly worked as an associate at Babin and Seeger until he was hired in 2006 by the Sonoma County District Attorney's Office.

Urioste is the fourth judge to be appointed to Sonoma County's 22-member bench of judges and commissioners since last year, following the appointments of fellow former prosecutors Christopher Honigsberg, Jennifer Dollard and Barbara Phelan, a former judicial staff attorney at the First District Court of Appeal in San Francisco. Urioste will take up Chouteau's post upon the judge's retirement at the end of the year.


Dina Jose has been selected to be director of corrections for Napa County. She has served as acting director of corrections since June.

Jose came to Napa County as the assistant director of corrections in 2016, after spending more than 20 years in the corrections division of the San Joaquin County Sheriff's Office.

Jose has an extensive background in correctional system management, according to Napa County. Jose holds a bachelors' degree in criminal justice management.


Jerlena Griffin-Desta, Ph.D., is set to join Sonoma State University on Jan. 28 as chief of staff and associate vice president for strategic initiatives and diversity. Griffin-Desta is coming to SSU from the University of California Office of the President, where she serves as deputy to the vice president of student affairs and associate vice president for student development and engagement.

Currently, Griffin-Desta provides strategic direction and leadership in areas such as student and civic engagement, diversity, student mental health and wellness, according to the announcement. She also helps lead UC President Janet Napolitano's initiatives on global food and basic needs; LGBT students, faculty and staff; undocumented students and immigration; and student veterans.

Griffin-Desta began her career in student services at the University of San Francisco and spent more than 20 years at University of California campuses in Los Angeles and Berkeley in various leadership roles in student and academic affairs. She earned her bachelor's degree from Mercer University, where she studied communications and English. She later earned her master's and doctoral degrees from UC Berkeley's Graduate School of Education program on policy, organizations, measurement and evaluation.


Khailylah “Kiki” Jordan has been appointed interim CEO of Marin City Health and Wellness Center. Jordan has been at the center for four years, most recently serving as director of the Marin Family Birth Center. She takes over for JayVon Muhammad, who announced after five years at the helm that she is taking a new position at the SWLA Center for Health Services in Lake Charles, Louisiana.


Brigitte Lahme, Ph.D., professor and chairwoman of the Department of Mathematics and Statistics at Sonoma State University, has been selected by the National Resource Center and Cengage Learning for a 2018–2019 Outstanding First-Year Student Advocate award.

The national award recognizes educators for exceptional work in student learning, development and success, according to the National Resource Center.

A professor at SSU since 2002, Lahme has spearheaded initiatives such as a transformation of Sonoma State's curriculum for first-year math students.­


Active 20-30 Santa Rosa board members for spring are Richard McChinak, Steve Shira, Keith Roberts, Herman Hernandez, Brian Sosnowchik, Matt Heuss and Andy Bain.

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