Visit Napa Valley is proud to celebrate the diversity of our tourism business community. In this installment of our Pride series, meet Kelly E. Carter, Director of Communications at Alpha Omega Winery and Alpha Omega Collective. We sat down with Kelly to find out what inspired her to live and work in Napa Valley, her favorite places to explore, and more. 

Visit Napa Valley
Can you tell us about what inspired you to live and work in Napa Valley?

Kelly
When I decided to leave San Francisco and searched for a new locale to call home, I was drawn to Napa Valley because it reminded me so much of Italy, where I lived from 2003-2005. The beauty of Napa Valley, the emphasis on good food and wine, the convivial atmosphere and the spirit of a giving community made Napa Valley perfect for me at this time in my life. I was a magazine editor when I moved here but all along my plan was to reinvent myself and switch from being a journalist to a communications consultant for wineries. Before I could put my plan in place, I was offered a job by Alpha Omega.  

Visit Napa Valley
How does being a member of the BIPOC community impact or inspire your work?

Kelly
Now that so much attention has been brought to the lack of diversity in the wine industry, I have made it my mission to do what I can to help attract other African Americans to Napa Valley. I want people of color to know of the career opportunities available in the industry. The media have focused on black-owned winery brands, but everyone can’t have their own label. There are a number of African Americans working at several wineries throughout the Valley and these people hold a variety of positions ranging from tasting room associate to estate director to director of technology to CEO. Since I started at Alpha Omega in 2016, I made it a point to introduce myself to our African American guests who are in for a tasting or attending a Wine Club event when I can do so in a natural way. To me, it’s important that they know that Alpha Omega has an African American in upper management. I think diversity in personnel speaks volumes about a company. We notice when no one looks like us at businesses that we patronize. 

Visit Napa Valley
What are some of your favorite things to do in Napa Valley?

Kelly
As a Yountvillian, when I’m not taking advantage of being in walking distance to some of Napa’s best restaurants, then I can often be found walking off the calories I’ve consumed. Power walking Yount Mill Road past the cows is one of my favorite paths. If I want a challenging hike, then I head for Oat Hill Mine. Otherwise, my choice is Westwood Hills Park. And, of course, I love going wine tasting. I always encourage friends to visit so I can book them at Alpha Omega, which gives me a legitimate excuse to sit outside on the terrace and enjoy the views with them. JCB in Yountville is my happy place because the glitz makes me smile. And I could go on the tour at Schramsberg every week and never tire of it – or the bubbles! I’m downtown more now because of the Alpha Omega Collective tasting room. You can often find me sitting outside with a glass of wine and the Korean Fried Chicken sandwich from The Dutch Door, watching people go by.

Visit Napa Valley
Anything else you'd like visitors to the community to know about Alpha Omega, or Napa Valley in general?

Kelly
It honestly brings a smile to my face to see how happy and relaxed guests are at Alpha Omega – and not just because they’ve been drinking! I think it’s because we take hospitality so seriously. Everyone wants to deliver top-notch service on par with Alpha Omega’s beautiful wines and stunning views because we want our guests to go home and tell their friends about the memorable experience they had whether on our terrace or in a private tasting. And we want our guests to think of us every time they come back to Napa Valley. It’s the perfect escape from today’s worries.


Stay tuned to meet more of Napa Valley's diverse tourism business community! Looking to support Minority and LGBTQ+ owned businesses? Check out the lists below. 

Support Minority-Owned and LGBTQ+ Owned Napa Valley Businesses: 

Wineries 
Brown Estate
Okapi Wines 
LVE Wines
Darjean Jones Wines
Domaine Curry Wines
Charles Woodson Wines 
J. Moss Winery
Twentyfour Wines Tasting Room
Mi Sueno Winery
Ceja Vineyards
Kieu Hoang Winery

Restaurants
The Q R&B 
Buster’s BBQ
Small World
La Chevre
Morimoto
Tarla
Hal Yamashita Napa
Tanya’s Taqueria
Clemente’s Takeout
Napa Valley Bistro
Protea 
Emmy Lou’s Diner
Tacos Chavez
Sweet Straw
Ben & Jerrys Downtown Napa

Lodging, Spas & Salons, and Personal Services
The Inn on First 
Chateau de Vie 
Blue Water Day Spa
The Parlour Salon
Little Blue Box Weddings

Did we miss businesses on the above lists? Email janette@visitnapavalley.com to let us know!

 

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