Curt Garland - Owner
Born and raised in Prince George, BC, Curt Garland had a connection with BC’s beauty from the start Curt, however, also wanted to experience the world and has travelled to many countries When Curt saw Hester Creek in 2004, the similarities between the Mediterranean and Oliver seemed immediate and he couldn’t help but involve himself in the wine industry. Curt purchased Hester Creek just a few months later in May 2004 In his limited spare time, Curt enjoys flying, hiking, fishing, and camping.
Learn more about Curt Garland.PDF:771kb
Robert Summers - Winemaker
Hailing from the Niagara region, it seems natural that Rob Summers figures large in the Canadian wine industry After acquiring an Honours Degree in Food Science (BSc, Hons) from the University of Guelph he worked at Hillebrand Estates, Henry of Pelham, Cave Spring Cellars, and Peller Estates. While at Peller, Rob directed VQA winemaking for two vintages in the Okanagan where he saw the vast potential that the south Okanagan Valley held, and was inspired to relocate his family to Osoyoos He joined the team at Hester Creek Estate Winery in 2006 and his signature winemaking style has since gained accolades from his fellow winemakers and seasoned wine experts alike.
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Mark Sheridan - General Manager
Born and raised in the Barossa Valley in Australia, and after earning a Bachelor of Agriculture Science at Adelaide University, Mark went on to work for some of Australia’s largest wine producers. Mark was attracted to BC, as he saw the Okanagan as the world’s next wine frontier, so in 1999, he moved to Canada to be director of vineyard operations for Vincor Canada. He was recognized for his talents and called “a rising star in a young industry”.
Now, as Hester Creek’s general manager, Mark oversees all aspects of the winery’s business, from viticulture through to the finished wines and then into the marketplace.
Learn more about Mark Sheridan.PDF : 848kb
Robin Openshaw - Vice President Corporate Development
Robin Openshaw was born and raised in Leeds, England but moved to Canada at a young age where he graduated high school and began his career in British Columbia. Robin worked in the general insurance business for many years which is where his five-decade business and personal relationship with winery owner Curt Garland began. Robin and his wife Lee Ann have dedicated most of the past several years to the development of Hester Creek winery. When faced with a rare opportunity to relax, reading, traveling and dining out top Robin’s leisure list.
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Lee Ann Openshaw - Villa Manager
Lee Ann Openshaw was born in Nelson, British Columbia and spent the majority of her life living in Vancouver where she met husband Robin Openshaw nearly fifty years ago. Lee Ann, in her previous role as mother and homemaker, says her greatest pride and joy is her family - two daughters, three grandsons and one granddaughter. Though her efforts of past years have been almost exclusively focused on Hester Creek, she loves to unwind by walking, reading, skiing, golfing and traveling.
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Marie Hebrard - Assistant Winemaker
Marie Hebrard was born (auspiciously on Canada Day) and raised in the south of France. After completing university, she arrived in Keremeos, BC seven months pregnant and set on making the Okanagan her new home. After years of organic crop farming in the Similkameen as one of the first members of the Similkameen Organic Producers Association (SOPA), Marie started working in 2005 at the vineyard now know as Seven Stones while attending school. From there she worked in the vineyard at Road 13 Vineyards before relocating to Osoyoos and arriving to work at Hester Creek in 2006. At Hester Creek she worked in the wine shop and the cellar before taking a full time position as assistant to Rob Summers. Marie has an infectious, engaging personality, and loves cooking, wine, people and taking in culture and nature.
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Roger Gillespie - Director of Hospitality
Roger Gillespie was born and raised in Winnipeg, but has worked throughout Canada in the restaurant business over the past 20 years including stints in Jasper Park, Alberta and Tofino and Whistler in BC. He first visited the Okanagan in 1998 and fell in love with the region for all it has to offer food and wine lovers. He eventually moved to the valley as food and beverage manager at the Harvest Golf Club in Kelowna. In 2004, he moved to Summerland and worked for Sumac Ridge Estate Winery and See Ya Later Ranch until he opened his own restaurant in Summerland, the Victoria Road Deli & Bistro, in June 2008. There he gained a following for his commitment to seasonal local ingredients, serving heart-warming food, and his welcoming service. Roger loves food, wine and music and when he is not cooking he’s enjoying time with his 6 year old son or tending to his 15 varieties of Heirloom tomatoes.
Sarah Lefebvre - Communications Manager
Sarah Lefebvre has always been in the wine industry. In fact, she attended her first crush at three weeks old! While she worked for years in optometry, Lefebvre has also had wine on her mind through her parents' wine jelly business. Beyond family association, Lefebvre has also taken a distance education course in wine and winemaking from UC Davis and is an amateur winemaker. Her communications background also comes through her family's business, where she worked with marketing and social media communications. Lefebvre lives in Oliver with her husband and two small children.
Robert Smith - Director of Sales
Rob Smith joins the winery after working with Vincor Canada, where for the past 13 years he held the position of sales manager for the Okanagan. He knows everyone and is well liked for his easygoing nature and professionalism. In what seems like a lifetime ago, before joining the wine business, Smith spent several years in the Whistler restaurant scene, notably opening Barefoot Bistro. While Smith's restaurant, hotel and hospitality experience are helpful with all acpects of the winery, Smith's areas of responsibility are associated with sales. Smith lives in Penticton with his wife.
Grace Raber - Accountant
Grace started crunching numbers at Hester Creek in 2005. Coming from the accounting firm of White Kennedy in Penticton she was well versed in accounting procedures, but was thrilled to make the jump into the wine industry when the position at Hester Creek opened up. Before she found accounting, Grace spent 13 plus years living in Mexico as an administrator for a condominium developement and teaching aerobics. She was born and raised in Vancouver and is a newlywed, marrying Brian in the summer of 2010. After experimenting with life as far north as Haida Gwaii and as far south as Zihuatanejo, Mexico, Grace has finally- and happily- settled in the Okanagan. However, in a perfect world Grace would be in the sun on Troncones Beach, near Zihuatanejo in Mexico, enjoying serenity and peace with no cell service.
Sherrie Stickle - Sales/Admin Clerk
Sherrie came to Hester Creek in 2008 after spending 11 years in Saskatchewan where she worked in the finance department for the Cypress Health Region. She was born and raised in Vancouver BC and spent her early adulthood there untill travelling to the prairies. Sherrie loves to travel, camp, garden, walk and shares a celebratory birthday with winemaking assistant Marie on July 1st. She has 2 grown children and a dog that loves her unconditionally, happily living in Osoyoos.
Pete Baier - Shipping/Recieving
Pete arrived at Hester Creek in 2008 after managing the Osoyoos Shoppers Drug Mart for 24 years. He was born in Regina and as a small child his family moved to Osoyoos, where he grew up loving the water. Today, Pete's favourite activity is waterskiing on his boat with his family and friends. During the winter Pete spends his free time curling. Pete and his partner, Carol, have been together for 11 years and still live in Osoyoos.
Iqbal Gill - Vineyard Manager
Iqbal is Hester Creek's longest standing employee, starting here in 1995. He has seen tremendous change and growth at the winery. Iqbal grew up in India and immigrated here with his parents and brother in 1993. Coming from an agricultural background, his family purchased land and now have a 15 acre orchard of apples, cherries, and grapes. Iqbal was married in 1995 and has 2 children, born in 97 and 2000.