Foley Family Wines was founded in 1996, when Bill Foley established Foley Estates Winery in central California. Shortly after, he created Lincourt Winery, named after his two daughers, Lindsey and Courtney. In 2008, the Foley family entered Sonoma County with the purchase of iconic Sebastiani Vineyards. Throughout the years, Foley Family Wines has continued to purchase and create luxury estate wineries such as Chalk Hill Estate, Lancaster Estate, Ferrari-Carano, The Four Graces and Foley Johnson. The portfolio now spans an unparalleled collection of worldclass wineries located in California, Oregon, Washington and New Zealand.
Today, Foley Family Wines is elevating the stature of women in the company, as evidenced by the powerfully influential women currently serving in leadership roles.
Second-generation vintner Courtney Foley was named Director of Winemaking at Chalk Hill Estate in 2018 and today serves as Executive Vice President for Foley Family Wines. “We have consistently had female representation in our winemaking staff, and now that representation extends to the executive level,” says Foley. One of her top priorities is ensuring that workplace diversity is at the forefront of her leadership efforts.
With just over 600 employees, the number of women working at Foley Family Wines is almost exactly one-third, with many holding key roles. In January of 2021, longtime Ferrari-Carano Executive Winemaker Sarah Quider was promoted to Vice President of Winemaking for the Foley Family Wines Sonoma portfolio. In addition to her continued role producing Ferrari-Carano wines, she takes on responsibilities for Chalk Hill, Sebastiani and Lancaster Estate. Quider is entering her 26th year crafting wines from Sonoma vines. Her winemaking philosophy centers around a light touch in the cellar coupled with careful blending, always aiming to capture the essence of what Mother Nature delivers balanced by the distinct character of each grape source.
And 25 years after the founding of Lincourt ushered the Foley family into the world of wine, the third female winemaker in the history of that brand holds court—Lorna Kreutz. She also oversees winemaking for Firestone, Foley Estates and Two Sisters wines in California’s Central Coast. Kreutz says that she’s always felt supported to do what is best for the wines, and that autonomy comes with the recognition of success. “This is a familyrun company that fosters promotion from within, and I’m a direct example of that,” she says. “I joined the company in 2011 as an assistant winemaker, and I progressed up to Director of Winemaking.”