Meet the Sierra Vista Team

Jim Czachorowski


Jim, his wife Sherry and daughter Savanna are incredibly excited to be the new owners of Sierra Vista. Jim & Sherry have dreamed of owning a vineyard since their first trip to Tuscany back in the early 2000s. Jim built and grew a commercial tile company called Great Lakes Tile & Contracting into one of the most successful and respected tile contracting companies in Michigan. Prior to being in the tile business, he spent 12 years working at General Motors World Technical Center as a Journeyman Wood Model Maker, building patterns and models for prototype vehicles. He was also very fortunate to grow up with a father that was a mentor and best friend. Together with Jim’s brother Bob, the three of them restored many old cars, fixed and built everything around the home and work together in the plastic injection molding trade for some time.

Coming into the wine business is a new venture for Jim and his family, but pride, passion, tenacity, and hard work are nothing new to him. His personality traits and business sense are what drives success, teamwork, camaraderie and customer experience. When not being involved in the business side of things, Jim enjoys time spent with family especially their 11-year daughter Savanna who models, acts, plays piano and violin, and successfully competes in pageants.

Philip Hughes

General Manager

Philip has close to 15 years in the industry and has an incredible way to engage with guests in a fun and educational way with his vast knowledge of information and experience. He was born in California but grew up in Colorado. Philip started his wine career at 21 while in college in Fort Collins, CO and owned a small wine shop in Boulder County, Colorado for about 5 years specializing in boutique, high-end French, Italian, Spanish and American wines. To be closer to family, Philip sold the shop and moved back to California. He is one of 5 children and is very family-oriented.

After moving back to California Philip’s spent time as the Tasting Room Manager at both Cielo Estate and Scott Harvey Wines before the opportunity arose to become General Manager at Sierra Vista. His extensive knowledge about wine and personal level of pride drive him to deliver an excellent customer experience. He came highly recommended. The entire Sierra Vista team and its customers are fortunate to have Philip leading the team.

Susan Farrington

WineMaker Extraordinaire

Susan has over 25 years of experience making wine. John MacCready, the founder of Sierra Vista recognized her amazing abilities, her love for all things wine and the pride she takes in her work when he handpicked her to take over winemaking at Sierra Vista.

Susan is a highly-respected winemaker in the industry with incredible senses and work-ethic. Susan has the same goal every day; to make the best wines we can with passion and pride to blow away our customers.

Because of Susan’s love of winemaker, you won’t only find her in production, but she spends time at pouring events inside and out of our Estate and enjoys mingling with customers who love to try our wine. Wine lovers are never disappointed with the wine that Susan helps create.

Daniel Malone

Assistant Wine Maker

With years of experience working in the cellar in one form or another, Daniel came from Villa Toscana as the proud Assistant Wine Maker. He was born and raised in Monterrey, California as one of 4 children. He played competitive hockey for 11 years and built a sense of teamwork, passion and commitment which has translated into his professional winemaking career.

Passion, commitment, attitude and pride are just a few attributes that make Daniel such a valuable member of our team. Daniel and Susan work hand in hand every day in making sure our wines are well taken care of, from grape to glass, for all our wine lovers to enjoy!

Maryann Salvatierra

Tasting Room Host

Maryann’s smiling familiar face is a joy to have around. She is the longest standing team member and has been at Sierra Vista for years.

Maryann is beloved by our guests and her colleagues because of her fun, cheerful and entertaining personality and her tireless effort to get things done whenever they are needed.

You’ll meet Maryann in the tasting room and around the property… always with a smile on her face.

Lynzee Schram

Events Manager

Lynzee Schram grew up in a small town in Idaho. She moved out to California and attended college at California State University, Sacramento graduating with a degree in Business Administration.

After a tour of the corporate world and a sabbatical for some travel, Lynzee worked at Sierra Vista as the Tasting Room/Wine Club/Events Manager from 2011-2013. She got married (at Sierra Vista!) in 2012, to her husband Eric. They have a construction company, Alpine Ridge Construction, and two amazing little boys who are a bundle of energy and keep life interesting!

Lynzee loves the outdoors, rock climbing, yoga and being active with her sweet family.
She is so happy to be back at Sierra Vista Winery as the new Events Manager. It feels like coming home!

Natalie Potter


Natalie was born and raised in Shelby Township, Michigan. She graduated from Wayne State University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Marketing. She spent a few years working in the marketing field until she met Jim and started working at his other business, Great Lakes Tile, as an Estimator. When Jim purchased Sierra Vista, Natalie took on the Marketing role with her previous experience and began redesigning all of the new event flyers, website, marketing materials and updating social media.

When Natalie isn’t working she’s spending time raising her thirteen-year-old son who plays football, basketball and runs track and her seven-year-old daughter who cheers on a competitive team. Natalie’s multitasking abilities, organizational skills, and eye for detail are what makes her so great at her job.

Leslie Gates

Event Coordinator

Leslie grew up in Colorado and attended Colorado State University.  She moved to the Placerville area in August, 2019 from Orange County, CA.  She and her husband, Steve wanted to live in a place that offered a slower pace, outdoor adventures and beautiful scenery.

Leslie worked in the television industry for 38 years and retired last year.  She has also been a health and wellness coach for 20 years.  She enjoys cycling and yoga and educating people on the benefits of healthy living. She and Steve have three grown children; Jamie, Ryan and Leah.

Leslie is so happy to be part of the Sierra Vista team and learning all about our wonderful wines, wine making, assisting in the tasting room and helping coordinate and plan Sierra Vista events.

Patrick Ferrell

Ranch Hand

Patrick grew up in Detroit and started working as an apprentice in the tile trade as a teenager with Jim at Great Lakes Tile and stayed with him for 10 years. Patrick is a proud father of 3 children and engaged to be married in the near future. His fiance’s work took their family down to Atlanta, GA, where he took a job as a personal trainer. He spent 2 years playing basketball in college while getting an associate’s degree in physical therapy.

When the opportunity arose to work in California with Jim again, he put his life on hold to come out and check things out. After falling in love with the people and community, his family decided to become permanent members of the community and move to California. His fiance was able to transfer her employment with Comcast and Sierra Vista added another great team member.

Patrick has multiple responsibilities around the estate. From taking care of the grounds, keeping our vehicles in top shape, working events, deliveries and more.

Customer Reviews

“Great Zinfandels, an excellent Merlot and some Rhone selections such as Grenache and Mourvèdre are what stand out at this winery.”


Frank Ober

"Love this sweet winery in the foothills of the Sierra. Lovely shaded trees to sit under and enjoy a picnic lunch with one of the fantastic wines they offer."


Mary Bourn

“Best find ever! Amazing winery off the beaten path. Perfect place to sit under the trees next to the grape vines.”


Amy C.

“This place is awesome! The wine is amazing and the people serving are too, the grounds are gorgeous, perfect for a day out to sit in the sun and enjoy a glass of wine looking at the beautiful view!”


Kerri Gray

“Very friendly people in a beautiful setting. Nice sweet wines.”


Rosalia Garcia

“Fantastic choice of great wines and very friendly people. They have variety of grapes on estate and make number of great wines. Grenache, Zin, Sira, Cab - all present in the list and all are good.”


Igor Shabalov

“Great for picnics and to enjoy the wonderful people who work here, and the special events that exist for the generous wine club.”


Frank Ober

“Sierra Vista is such a beautiful stop! The grounds are beautiful and quaint.”


Stephanie H.

“Worth a stop. The staff is welcoming and knowledgeable. The wines are solid and approachably priced.”


David O.

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Come Visit!

Sierra Vista Vineyards & Winery
4560 Cabernet Way
Placerville, El Dorado County, CA 95667

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Tasting Room Hours

Daily (Excluding Holidays)
10 AM to 5 PM

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