The Customer Vineyard Team


Mary Jo Dale, 


MJ is a seasoned leader with years of experience creating strategy and driving innovation. She grew up in Sonoma, went to high school in Napa and ultimately fled to the big city. MJ honed her management expertise via key positions including Director of Marketing for Westin Hotels & Resorts, Vice President Customer Marketing at AT&T Wireless and CMO for Gateway Computers. She eventually realized what she was missing, returned to wine country, and has since partnered with many wine businesses to transform marketing and operations including Kosta Browne, St. Francis, Crimson Wine Group and Treasury Wine Estates. She currently leads Americas marketing for Vinventions, recently launching the Wine Marketing Solutions division. MJ received a BA degree from Santa Clara University and a JD from UC Davis School of Law. 


Joel Miller, 

Founder and President

Joel leads the day-to-day operations at CV, managing our diverse set of resources and ensuring clients are delighted and amazed with our insights. He brings a unique skillset honed in executive roles across Tech, Retail, and Wine with extensive global experience.  He began his career at Procter & Gamble, and recent positions have included Executive Vice President at Guitar Center, Chief People Officer at Newegg, and Senior Vice President at Jackson Family Wines. Joel received an Engineering degree from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, teaches in Sonoma State University's Executive MBA program, and can often be spotted hiking or cycling the back trails of beautiful Sonoma county.


Sam Riewe, 


Sam applies his extensive knowledge in consumer behavior and statistical methods to yield the unique insights that provide Customer Vineyard's competitive edge. He divides his time between teaching and statistical research. His biggest complaint in life is having to explain that economists do more than banking! Sam obtained a BA in Economics from Sonoma State University and a MA from San Francisco State University.


Greg Ray, 


Over the last seven years Greg has worked in the wine industry in a myriad of capacities, ranging from wine club and e-commerce direct sales to analytics and logistics. Greg’s passion for wine extends beyond his work in the industry and has driven him to handcraft his own wine over the last four vintages. While he claims to be good at making wine, he’s even better at enjoying it. Greg holds a BS degree in Wine Business Strategies and a MBA with an emphasis on customer analytics from Sonoma State University.


Bret Beucler, 



Bret has over twenty-five years of extensive, real-world experience with a wide variety of software and data projects spanning several industries. Specializing in data manipulation software projects, he takes pride in effective and maintainable solutions. In his spare time, Bret runs around a soccer field with his buddies and, on occasion, accidentally kicks the ball into the net. Bret holds a Bachelor’s degree in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities.


Annette Achermann, 



A Silicon Valley native, Annette works with companies to develop innovative products, services, and experiences. A blend of creative professional and critical business thinker, Anette operates at the intersection of human behavior and markets. Specializing in UI/UX, user research, and visual and product design, Annette is passionate about creating exceptional experiences that solve real problems. Annette started her career at Nestlé USA, and recent positions have included VP of Marketing for Earlier in her career, Annette held strategy consulting positions at the MAC Group / Capgemini Consulting and Regis McKenna Inc. Annette received her BS from Santa Clara University and MBA from the Kellogg School at Northwestern University.

Advisory Board Members


Rob McMillan, 

EVP and Founder, Silicon Valley Bank's Wine Division

Rob McMillan is the only banker to be named one of the Top 100 Most Influential People in the US Wine Industry and has been authoring Silicon Valley Bank’s State of the Wine Industry Report for close on 20 years. He is the founder of the Bank’s wine division, which is now recognised as the leading provider of financial services to the US fine wine business. A frequent media commentator, lecturer at several West Coast universities and regular blogger, Rob’s informed opinions are trusted by wine producers, importers and financiers alike. He has served on a variety of boards over the course of his career in diverse industries, and continues to do so today within the wine space.


Bill Silver, 

CEO, CannaCraft

During his tenure as Dean of the School of Business and Economics at Sonoma State University, Dr. Silver was widely recognized as bringing a spirit of entrepreneurship and innovation to the school and the university. His accomplishments include shaping the $9.2 million Wine Spectator Learning Center, a new home for the Wine Business Institute opening in 2018. Additionally, he directed executive education programs for more than 75 client organizations including First Data Corporation, Newmont Mining, Coors Brewing, Kaiser Permanente, Hewlett Packard, and Lockheed Martin. A visionary and collaborative leader, Bill has a proven track record of creating academic distinction, student achievement, enrollment growth, philanthropic success, support for diversity, community engagement, shared governance, financial results and more.


Malcolm Thompson, 

Chief Innovations Officer and President, Americas, Vinventions LLC

Malcolm leads strategy development and implementation processes as well as research and development initiatives for Vinventions, Americas. He joined Vinventions from Nomacorc where he ran technology and was responsible for quality, sales, marketing, and business development globally. Before joining Nomacorc, he spent 22 years with Netherlands-based DSM Corporation, a global leader in life sciences and materials and one of Nomacorc’s original strategic supply partners. Malcolm has a Bachelor’s degree in Chemistry from Dalhousie University and a Master’s degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of New Brunswick.  


Mark Verissimo, Chief Risk Officer at Silicon Valley Bank (retired)

Mark recently retired as Chief Risk Officer from Silicon Valley Bank. During his career at SVB he ran the California lending division for the Bank, was the interim CFO twice, and oversaw the initial overseas expansion (UK, China, Israel, India). At various points he had IT, Operations, Legal, Marketing, Project Management, and International Services reporting to him. As Chief Risk Officer he oversaw Credit, EWRM, Portfolio Analytics, Credit Review, Compliance, Regulatory Relations, and Cyber/Physical security.