January 15, 2019, Napa, CA – Visit Napa Valley, the official destination marketing organization for the Napa Valley, is pleased to announce the appointment of Linsey Simpson Gallagher as the organization’s new president, effective Feb. 4, 2019.
Gallagher will report to Clay Gregory, who will remain at the organization as CEO to provide guidance and mentorship during the onboarding process. Gregory will celebrate his 10-year anniversary with Visit Napa Valley in June 2019, and provide continuity of information and knowledge transfer as the fiscal year 2020-2023 Long Range Plan is drafted.
“Linsey joins us after 10 years in a senior leadership position at the California Wine Institute, and has strong relationships with key stakeholders and partners, including Visit California and the Napa Valley Vintners,” states Gregory, CEO, Visit Napa Valley. “I am confident that Linsey will be an excellent leader for our team as we enter into a new decade strategically promoting the Napa Valley as one of the world’s premier destinations and positioning tourism as a long-term community partner.”
Gallagher most recently served as Vice President, International Marketing for the California Wine Institute since 2008. In this role, she was responsible for managing California’s wine export program; overseeing collaborative efforts with Visit California, the state’s marketing organization; and leading an international team of 25 staff, including 16 international representative offices, as well as a team of four at the San Francisco headquarters. She also led market expansion strategies and tactics in key emerging markets such as China, as well as developed markets including Canada, the UK, and Mexico.
From 2006 to 2008, Gallagher served as Vice President of regional development for Simpson Development Corporation, a real estate developer based in Norwich, VT and Naples, FL. There, she led a corporate re-branding project and created sales and marketing strategies and communication platforms for two new real estate development projects. She gained wine industry experience at E. & J. Gallo Winery from 2002 to 2006, where she was responsible for marketing strategy and brand execution for several import and domestic brands. Prior to this, Gallagher was Manager of Finance for the NBC Today Show and a Financial Analyst for General Electric Capital Services.
“I am thrilled to be joining this unique and dynamic organization and have long admired the work that Clay Gregory and his team have done to build the reputation of Napa Valley as a world class destination,” states Gallagher. “My work with the California Wine Institute has helped grow California wine exports by nearly 80 percent to more than $1.5 billion, with our wines being shipped to 125 countries throughout the world. A large part of that success is telling the stories of the Golden State as an iconic and aspirational destination and connecting this special place with our world class wine producing region. The diversity and quality of California wines has been the focal point of our messaging, and Napa Valley is the crown jewel of California’s winegrowing regions. I look forward to promoting and protecting this beautiful valley by acting as a steward of the Napa Valley brand, and am honored that Clay and the Board of Directors have entrusted me with this opportunity.”
Gallagher lives in Napa, CA with her husband and two young children and earned an undergraduate degree from the University of Vermont and an MBA degree from Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. Her interests include travel, tennis, and reading, and she speaks fluent Spanish.
About Visit Napa Valley
Visit Napa Valley is the official tourism marketing organization for the Napa Valley, with a mission to promote, protect and enhance the region’s position as one of the world’s premier wine, food, arts and wellness destinations.
The Napa Valley, conveniently located just an hour from the San Francisco Bay Area, consists of the following distinctive towns, including, from north to south, Calistoga, St. Helena, Rutherford/Oakville, Yountville, the city of Napa, American Canyon, and the outdoor recreation area of Lake Berryessa.