Kristen Georges, President
Kristen began her career managing Genentech’s Foundation for Biomedical Sciences. She then went on to work in venture capital and biotech investor relations before finding her way into the non-profit world. She has worked in venture philanthropy, fund development and has over 12 years of experience as an Executive Director. After graduating from the non-profit management program at Harvard Business School, she became the CEO of several non-profit agencies. Kristen worked on the merger team that brought together and formed the Up Valley Family Center and had the privilege of being its first Board President. She now spends her time with her husband raising their twins in St. Helena while volunteering and supporting the non-profits where she feels she can help make a difference.
“Supporting kids and families in our community has always been a core value of mine. Through their wide variety of programs and services, the Up Valley Family Centers offer so much to so many. I am proud to support an organization that continues to make our up valley towns a better and stronger place.”
Bonnie Schoch, Vice President
Over the past four decades, Bonnie Schoch has earned a reputation as one of the most talented and knowledgeable CFOs in the Napa Valley wine industry. After receiving her degree in economics from UC Davis, Bonnie spent the next two decades at Domaine Chandon, where she became known for her leadership, strategic thinking and fiscal acumen. Bonnie also held CFO positions at Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars and St. Supéry, before being named the CFO for Cuvaison Estate Wines in 2010. Bonnie is passionately involved in the St. Helena community, where she spent eight years as a school board member, and eight years on the St. Helena City Council. Bonnie was also a past board member of Women for WineSense, which supports the professional development of women and men in wine and associated industries. She sat on several committees on the Napa Valley Vintners, including the Grants Committee and the Community & Industry Issues Committee.
“To have a stronger community we must support everyone in that community. The Upvalley Family Centers provide for members of our community that would have no where else to turn.”
Michael grew up in San Francisco, and began his career as a research attorney for the California State Court of Appeal, handling appeals in both civil and criminal cases.
In 1995 Michael and his wife moved to St. Helena, and retired in 2013, after 30 years with the Court. Since then, he has been able to pursue his diverse interests, full-time, which include traveling, performing in community theatre, singing in the local choir, umpiring little league, reading to children in the primary school, playing tennis, and sewing. In addition, Michael is an on-call chef at a local winery when he isn’t wearing his toque at home.
Michael received a BA in English from Columbia University and a JD from Hastings College of the Law.
“The measure of who I am as a person is in large part what I am able to do for others.”
Fred was born and raised in Buffalo, New York. He had a long and successful career serving as CEO for several national chain restaurants and recreational industries, including AMF Bowling Worldwide, California Pizza Kitchen Inc., and Gilbert/Robertson Inc. Throughout his career, his work in the restaurant industry often brought him to the Napa Valley, and he and his family eventually decided to put down roots here. He lives with his wife in St. Helena, is a dedicated father and grandfather, and he remains active serving as a board member and executive advisor for various organizations that are meaningful to him.
“I have always believed that locally supported and staffed organizations offer the best opportunity for a successful, efficient and impactful effect on the communities they serve. I also believe that it takes a talented and motivated team to achieve this success, which is evident at Up Valley Family Centers. I think I that I can contribute some of my experience and hopefully make a difference to forward the success of the organization, which plays a vital role in our neighborhoods.”
Raised in Chicago, Kate received a BA from Tulane University and worked in the NY fashion industry at Giorgio Armani Fashion Corporation until moving to San Francisco. In 2010 Kate and her family chose to make Calistoga their home.
Kate’s charitable work over the years has included giving her time and talents to Schools of the Sacred Heart in San Francisco, and serving as a board member for the San Francisco Boy’s Chorus, as well as for The Pathway Home in Yountville, CA.
“I have always been a firm believer that raising up those that may be struggling in the community strengthens the entire community. The UVFC does just that.”
After 18 years at Cakebread Cellars in International Marketing and Corporate Hospitality and sales, Karen founded her own small production wine brand, ZIATA, named in honor of her mother Mary Annunziata, in 2008.
Karen is a strong supporter of her community and enjoys volunteering and serving on local boards and committees. Karen currently serves on the Board of Directors of the St. Helena Hospital Foundation and is past president of the Calistoga Winegrowers and Calistoga Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors. ZIATA is a member of the Napa Valley Vintners, where Karen previously served on their Board. For her compassionate work with victims of the Valley Fire in 2015, Karen was named Calistoga Citizen of the Year in 2016.
As much as Karen enjoyed exploring the world, her roots are now firmly planted in Calistoga, where she, her lovable Labrador, Neela, and her Sauvignon Blanc vines live.
“Senior citizens are some of the most vulnerable members of a community. I want to ensure that our seniors have advocates and access to resources to meet their basic needs. The UVFC believes that healthy families are the foundation of a strong community and the organization helps people help themselves. I value the opportunity to give back to my community.”
Mitch has over 34 years of law enforcement experience. His first 31 years were at the UC Berkeley Police Department where he was promoted up the ranks and spent the last 3 years as the Chief of Police.
In 2013, Mitch became the Chief of Police for the City of Calistoga. From the start, Mitch engaged the community and developed partnerships with other local and state agencies. He implemented his philosophy of “Mission First, People Always”, a simple guiding philosophy that drives the department to deliver services in a professional, compassionate, and fair manner. Mitch has a BS from Long Beach State University in Police Science and is a graduate of the FBI National Academy for Police Executives. He is a member of the Calistoga Rotary, the St. Helena and Calistoga Boys & Girls Club Emeritus Board, the Napa County Gang & Youth Violence Prevention Commission, and serves on other local and county committees and initiatives.
“I am driven to help the youth in our community reach their full potential through education and mentoring.”
Kathye Citron is a professional trainer and organizational development consultant. She has over twenty years of experience in leadership, coaching, mentoring, and training. Based on the philosophy that all people have unrealized potential, Kathye provides individualized tools and recommendations for professional development, and teaches managers how to give the encouragement and support they need to be successful. She also has extensive experience facilitating Board and staff retreats and strategic planning sessions. Kathye has served on the Board of Trustees of the Presidio Graduate School in San Francisco, the Susan G Komen Breast Cancer Foundation Board, and the San Francisco International Wine and Food Society.
Kathye is currently a Senior Consultant for “The Consulting Team” in Mountain View. Formerly, Kathye was the Executive Director of the Career Planning Center in Los Angeles and CEO of Lifeprint in San Francisco. She holds a BA in Psychology from UCLA. She lives in Calistoga.
Laurie, a northern California native, is managing partner of Clark‐Claudon Vineyards with her husband.
After graduating from California Polytechnic State University with a BA in English, she joined the Peace Corps and served in Colombia. When she returned to the US, she made the Napa Valley home.
It was while teaching at the Napa Adult High School that Laurie developed a deep interest in the mental health of her students. She returned to school to earn her MA in Counseling and her Marriage and Family Therapy license. Laurie maintained a private practice in St. Helena specializing in youth and women’s issues until 2001. Laurie also developed and facilitated a nonprofit student enrichment program, designed to mentor, educate and support its high school members and their parents.
Laurie’s children, their spouses and her five grandchildren are all members of our community.
“A passion for healthy children and families inspired my professional life as a teacher, psychotherapist and adolescent program director. That same passion led me to the UpValley Family Centers board, whose mission is a perfect fit with my values.”
Nelson Cortez was born and raised in Napa, attended McPherson Elementary, Redwood Middle School, and graduated from Vintage High School. His parents, immigrants from Michoacán, moved to Napa in the early 80s. Nelson’s widowed Mother is poised to retire after 15 years working as a custodian for Vintage High School.
Nelson joined Napa County as a Staff Assistant to the Board of Supervisors in July 2015. Nelson works closely with Supervisors Brad Wagenknecht, Diane Dillon and Alfredo Pedroza, assisting them with constituent matters, communications, and organizing community meetings to address specific community concerns. Nelson’s prior experience working in government includes employment as a Senate Fellow and later as a Legislative Aide to California State Senator Marty Block where he was the primary policy consultant on public safety, elder issues, human services, among others. Nelson earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Latin American and Latina/o Studies from the University of California, Santa Cruz.
“Now more than ever we must work together to empower our community to be more civically engaged in order to improve our daily lives and combat inequities and injustices that surround underserved communities. I am pleased to serve on the Up Valley Family Centers’ board to advance its mission by engaging with decision makers and holding them accountable for people that often times are left out without a voice.”
Susan is a proud 4th generation San Franciscan and 5th generation native Californian and has happily called St. Helena her home for the past 14 years.
At the St Helena Chamber of Commerce, Susan produces Chamber Events, compiles the Weekly Newsletters and conducts Member Outreach. She is also on the Board of the White Barn music and live theatre organization. Simultaneously, she has been a project manager for Wine Women & Shoes, executing events throughout the US and Canada.
For 12 years, Susan was the Director of Creative Services for ASE Group, a boutique event and branding company with a satellite office in St Helena. Prior to that, she ran Duryea Floral Designs & Events where clients included The San Francisco Opera Ball, the San Francisco Spinster’s Ball, Gucci’s Grand Opening on Union Square, and the De Young Museum’s “Bouquets to Art”.
Susan earned a BA from San Francisco State University in Theatre Arts.
“I believe that family health and wellness programs and education programs for children are an essential foundation for the well-being of the community. The UpValley Family Centers promotes and offers access to these types of programs allowing me to participate in some small way.”
Stephen is a founding partner of Isaacs/Jellinek, a Calistoga-based consulting company that advises foundations and non-profits on subjects such as strategic planning, program evaluation, grant making, and impact assessment. He writes frequently about health, social-economic development, human rights, and foundations. His most recent book is Foundations 101: How to Start and Run a Great Foundation. With his wife, the journalist Ava Swartz, he co-authored the best-selling book, The Consumer’s Legal Guide to Today’s Health Care: Your Medical Rights and How to Assert Them. Mr. Isaacs has served as an official with the U.S. Agency for International Development in Thailand, vice-president of International Planned Parenthood’s Latin America-Caribbean Division, and professor of public health at Columbia University. A graduate of Brown University and Columbia Law School, he speaks French, Spanish, and Thai.
Sam Martin is the Chief Operating Officer/Chief Financial Officer of Kodo Inc./Dana Estates. Prior to this role, Sam had a long tenure working in the public accounting field, including experience as a Certified Fraud Examiner and helping companies develop policies and procedures to reduce exposure to fraud. Sam holds a degree in Business Administration with an emphasis in Accounting from California State University of Chico.
Sam is committed to strengthening the community through volunteer efforts. In addition to serving on the family center’s board of directors, Sam also serves on the boards of the Napa Valley Land Trust and the Napa Valley Masons.
Genevieve Welsh moved to Calistoga with her family in 1978. After graduating from Calistoga High School, she went on to Chico State. Upon returning to the valley, Genevieve entered the family business, Forni-Brown-Welsh Gardens, purveyors of organic produce, working alongside her father and his two partners. During this time she also taught and coached basketball at both St. Helena Catholic and Calistoga High Schools.
Genevieve gives generously of her time to a variety of causes benefitting children: she is the past president of the St. Helena Co-Op Nursery, head of fundraising for the Calistoga Education Foundation and on the Capital Campaign Committee for the Boys and Girls Club of St. Helena and Calistoga. She was named Calistoga Citizen of the Year in 2012. She is co-proprietor, with Thomas Rivers Brown, of Rivers-Marie Wines and the proud mother of two.
“The UpValley Family Centers are an integral part of the infrastructure that makes my community strong – a compassionate and safe anchor in the community where I grew up and where I now raise my children.”