FOUNDER & PRINCIPAL, CPA, CPC, QPC
Christopher McDonald is a highly accomplished and experienced professional with over 25 years of expertise in providing Investment Advisor, Finance, and Accounting Services to a diverse range of clients, including Corporations, Small Businesses, and Individuals. He holds licenses and certifications as a Licensed Certified Public Accountant (CPA), Certified Pension Consultant (CPC), Registered Investment Advisor, and Insurance Agent, showcasing his comprehensive skill set in the financial industry. Graduating from California State University, Chico, Chris holds a Business Degree in Business Administration with an emphasis in Personal Financial Planning. His focus areas encompass Financial Management, Asset Management, Risk Management, Tax Planning, Retirement Planning, and Estate Planning. Chris's strong connection to his alma mater is evident as he frequently returns as a guest lecturer, sharing his wealth of knowledge and expertise with aspiring students. Throughout his career, Chris has served as both a Pension Consultant and a Registered Investment Advisor, gaining valuable experience supporting Tech Companies during the Silicon Valley Boom. In 2002, he ventured into entrepreneurship and successfully established his own Investment Advisory firm. Alongside this accomplishment, Chris has showcased his leadership capabilities by overseeing Finance, Accounting, Human Resource, and Information Technology divisions in large Fortune 500 companies. Additionally, he has provided guidance to small ultra-premium wineries, demonstrating his versatility across diverse industries. Chris actively engages in Financial Consulting for Non-Profit Organizations and Wineries, further expanding his expertise and impact. With a profound understanding of Start-ups, Mergers, and Acquisitions, Chris has played instrumental roles in the development of a start-up winery into the 30th largest winery in the US within just 7 years. He has also expertly managed significant acquisitions, including Comcast's acquisition of Adelphia, Fox Sports, and NBCUniversal, as well as overseeing the sale, acquisitions, and spinoffs of boutique and ultra-premium wineries. Chris's strengths lie in Investing, Financial Planning, and Forecasting, where he excels in implementing effective Systems, Processes, and People strategies across all finance platforms. Beyond his professional achievements, Chris finds joy in his enduring marriage to his wife, whom he met over 25 years ago at CSU, Chico. He takes pride in his two children, who are currently pursuing higher education at universities in Georgia and Colorado. During his leisure time, Chris indulges in outdoor activities such as hiking, biking, and boating, relishing quality moments with his loved ones and friends.
FINANCIAL PLANNING & ANALYSIS MANAGER
Sarah Billstein is a highly accomplished and versatile finance professional with over 17 years of diverse industry experience. Her journey encompasses finance, consulting, entrepreneurship, and social media marketing, making her a sought-after expert in her field. Sarah's extensive expertise spans advertising, marketing, media, e-commerce, financial services, technology, publishing, social media, retail, and wine marketing. Throughout her illustrious career, Sarah has excelled in pivotal roles, demonstrating proficiency in financial planning, corporate advisory, business development, sales operations, and managing international teams. Her adaptable nature allows her to thrive in dynamic environments, addressing complex challenges with finesse. As a finance professional, Sarah provides strategic insights, streamlines financial operations, and steers companies towards sustainable growth. Her meticulous approach to financial analysis and innovative problem-solving consistently drive organizations to new heights of success. Sarah's impact extends beyond finance; she serves as a trusted advisor to businesses across diverse industries, offering invaluable guidance and driving positive transformations. Her passion for social media marketing has led to successful ventures, where she builds impactful online campaigns and fosters brand presence across platforms, connecting businesses with their target audiences. Known for her positive attitude and strong leadership, Sarah inspires colleagues to excel and stays at the forefront of industry trends. Her track record of accomplishments and ability to transcend industry boundaries establish her as an invaluable asset in any business context. As she continues to influence the industries she touches, Sarah Billstein remains committed to empowering businesses, fostering growth, and delivering unparalleled results for her clients and partners. Her dedication to excellence ensures her position as a respected and influential figure in finance and marketing, driving success and innovation across domains.
Phillip is an accomplished data scientist with extensive experience in consulting and logistics, particularly within hospitality and wine industries, spanning markets nationwide. His journey into the world of data science originated from a background in psychology, nurtured through his academic journey at UNC Chapel Hill. Phillip's professional focus lies in the domains of data automation, machine learning, and specialized market analysis. His mastery extends to proficiently navigating spreadsheet applications, notably Excel, and expertly implementing them in practical business contexts. Furthermore, he boasts a deep understanding of programming languages, including Python and VBA, and exhibits a high level of competence in utilizing essential tools like Power BI and visualization platforms such as Tableau. His extensive hands-on experience with diverse machine learning applications underscores his prowess in the field. Beyond his professional achievements, Phillip is a multifaceted individual. He finds solace in creating and immersing himself in the world of music. Equally cherished is his quality time with family, often embarked on through canoe trips with his wife and daughter, and in exploring the great outdoors, accompanied by his beloved canine companions.
Drawing upon more than thirty years of industry expertise, Felicia Covell remains an influential force in enhancing the operational and administrative landscapes of diverse wineries. A seasoned veteran within the wine sector, Felicia's specialization lies in providing indispensable support to wineries across areas such as accounting, licensing, and regulatory compliance. Felicia has played a vital role in overseeing financial operations. Her responsibilities include managing the general ledger, budgets, payroll, human resources, accounts payable, accounts receivable, and cash management. She has been instrumental in creating and issuing purchase orders for the winery, ensuring smooth and efficient procurement processes. Felicia has also been actively involved in compliance and licensing matters, ensuring adherence to industry regulations. Her keen attention to detail and meticulous approach have contributed to the success of yearend inventory audits. In addition to her financial expertise, Felicia has excelled in managing the direct-to-consumer department. Through her strategic efforts, she has boosted sales by implementing promotional initiatives, expanding the customer database, and meticulously organizing winery tasting room events. Felicia's adeptness at hiring and managing staff, artists, and caterers has been instrumental in delivering exceptional experiences to winery visitors. To augment her knowledge and skills in the wine industry, Felicia completed the Wine Business and Accounting Program at Sonoma State University in September 2022. She successfully completed the program and obtained a certificate. Felicia possesses a diverse range of technical proficiencies, including QuickBooks, ADP, Excel, Word, Wine Direct, Fidelity 401k, Outlook, Vintrace, AMS, Ultipro, Ship Compliant, and Avalara. These tools enable her to streamline processes and enhance efficiency in her professional endeavors. With her extensive experience, comprehensive skill set, and passion for the wine industry, Felicia Covell continues to make valuable contributions to the success and growth of wineries. Her dedication to excellence and commitment to delivering exceptional results have earned her a reputation as a trusted professional in the field.
Maggie Grymes is an accomplished and multifaceted professional who has made a significant impact in various fields throughout her career. Starting with a passion for art, she demonstrated exceptional academic performance and received prestigious awards and scholarships during her time at Virginia Commonwealth University. Early experiences in the art industry in New York City allowed her to develop strong problem-solving and creative thinking skills, laying a solid foundation for future endeavors. Showcasing her visionary approach and leadership capabilities, Maggie took on pivotal roles in different organizations. As an Assistant Director at Aerena Galleries & Gardens in Napa Valley, CA, Maggie exemplified her ability to drive transformative growth and achieve sustainable success. Beyond her involvement in the art world, Maggie displayed versatility as an Associate Head Swim Coach at University of California, Santa Cruz, Waves Aquatics Napa Valley, Saint Helena Saints and NYC Hydras, spanning over nearly a decade. Her passion for open water swimming led her to establish Sailfish Aquatics, LLC providing private lessons and clinics for individuals of all ages. Currently, Maggie is an accountant for Napa Valley Consulting, demonstrating her adaptability and commitment to continuous improvement. Alongside her professional pursuits, she actively engages in maritime operations as a deckhand, swimmer, and scuba diver for TowBoatUS Santa Cruz. Additionally, Maggie volunteers for the US Coast Guard Auxiliary, where she shares her marine knowledge and teaches water safety within her community. Maggie's ability to cultivate high-performing teams, direct positive change, and achieve outstanding results has earned her respect and recognition as an innovative leader. Her dedication to excellence, strategic vision, and inspirational qualities makes her a leadership role model and a positive force for change. During her time off, you can find her planning her next scuba diving adventure, heading to a concert or hiking the beautiful trails in the area.
Lauren Holt is a highly regarded professional in the SF Bay Area and beyond, known for her expertise in bookkeeping and payroll services. As the owner and operator of Lauren Holt Bookkeeping Services, she has assisted numerous small businesses across a wide range of industries, including construction, wine production, retail, and fine artistry. With a decade of experience in college education, Lauren brings excellent communication skills to her work, ensuring clear and effective communication with her clients. Her reliability and meticulous attention to detail have earned her a reputation for delivering exceptional service. Lauren's qualifications include completing the Accounting Principles Certificate through UC Davis, as well as additional coursework in the Accounting Specialist program at the same institution. Her extensive knowledge and expertise in accounting contribute to her ability to provide accurate and comprehensive financial solutions to her clients. Beyond her professional achievements, Lauren is deeply passionate about making a positive impact in her community. She actively supports environmentalism, social responsibility, and human well-being. In her commitment to these values, Lauren actively seeks to work with businesses and organizations that align with these principles. Lauren also engages in community service activities to give back. She volunteers her time teaching English language classes to the immigrant community, contributes as a dog walker at local animal shelters, and takes an active role in preserving the environment by picking up trash on hiking trails. Lauren Holt embodies a well-rounded professional who not only excels in her field but also strives to make a difference in the lives of individuals, families, and organizations within her community.
Michelle Jones is a highly skilled and experienced professional with a strong background in accounting and business management. Her proficiency in vendor relations, document management, process management, and strategic planning showcases her deep understanding of the field. Michelle's critical thinking and analytical abilities enable her to excel in complex problem-solving and idea generation. As a proven performer, Michelle's attention to detail is exceptional, and she is dedicated to empowering organizations to achieve top-tier communications with accurate and precise results. Her commitment to optimizing and improving workflow processes ensures that she consistently provides exceptional customer support and meets the unique needs of businesses effectively. Michelle's diverse experience across various industries, such as beverage distribution and wine consulting, has equipped her with the adaptability to excel in dynamic work environments and deliver outstanding results. Beyond her professional achievements, Michelle is actively involved in giving back to her community. She demonstrates a caring nature by participating in dog rescue efforts and fostering animals in need. Moreover, she contributes her time and expertise to a community homeless shelter, providing education to battered women and offering guidance on basic money management skills. Michelle's dedication to helping others goes beyond her professional endeavors, making a positive impact on the lives of those around her. In her leisure time, Michelle finds joy in exploring new destinations through travel, which broadens her horizons and enriches her experiences. As an avid reader, books provide her with inspiration and knowledge. Gardening allows her to connect with nature and find solace, while engaging in outdoor activities like hiking and biking keeps her active and invigorated. Michelle Jones is a well-rounded and compassionate professional, combining her expertise in accounting and business management with a genuine commitment to making a difference in her community. Her exceptional skills, dedication, and track record of delivering outstanding results set her apart and consistently exceed expectations.