Erik Fisher General Manager
Erik brings 20 years of sales, marketing, and hospitality experience along with him to this new and exciting project at Monte Creek Ranch Winery.
Before heading up this great venture, Erik worked for the largest Canadian owned wine company in Andrew Peller Ltd. Erik shared his time at Peller in key sales and marketing roles. Erik directly impacted a lot of success Sandhill, Red Rooster and Wayne Gretzky Okanagan experienced across Western Canada during his tenure with the company. Prior to Peller, Erik has part of a very successful team launching Red Bull Energy Drink in BC. Erik spent 5 years with Red Bull directing the sales team and like his time at Peller, he consistently produced tremendous results in excess of market and competitor growth.
Outside of work Erik has maintained a strong interest in teaching, community and giving back to the industry that has been so generous to him. Erik currently holds a position as a director on the BC Wine Institute board, Thompson Okanagan Tourism board and the Okanagan Wine Festival Society board.
Galen Barnhardt Winemaker
Galen grew up in the North Shuswap and developed a passion for wine after 15 years in the restaurant industry and several years travelling the world. In 2009, he returned to school to study at the Cool Climate Oenology and Viticulture Institute (CCOVI) at Brock University in Niagara, Ontario.
Galen began his winemaking career with a vintage in Niagara, followed by Cedar Creek Estate Winery in Kelowna where he worked his way up to the position of Assistant Winemaker. While working with Cedar Creek, he took an opportunity to work with the ultra-premium Pinot Noir producer Ata Rangi in Martinborough, New Zealand. In 2014, Galen moved to Western Australia to work with Cape Mentelle Vineyards, one of Australia’s top estates. He also spent three months working in Oregon, making premium Pinot Noir and Chardonnay.
Galen joined the Monte Creek Ranch team in December of 2014. His broad range of experience has been instrumental in the completion of the winery and the guidance of the winemaking and viticulture. Galen strives to make balanced and elegant wines that are representative of the unique South Thompson terroir.
“I truly believe that Monte Creek Ranch will be a leader within the British Columbia wine industry. We are at the boundary of cool climate viticulture and it is when wineries push boundaries that exciting, unique, and delicious wines are made.”
Ashley Demedeiros Marketing & Sales Coordinator
As a seasoned integrated marketing guru, Ashley has dipped her fingers into various elements that are used in creating a brand. Over the last 7 years she has been gathering experience in the marketing industry and has loved the journey. Her employment history has had her doing everything from HTML coding, to social media campaigns, promotional content, website content writing, print advertising strategies, photography, design and online marketing strategy.
Ashley is excited to do her part for the Monte Creek Ranch Winery team by developing marketing plans and watching the business grow. Her passion and determination are a great asset to the team.
In addition to writing, social media, marketing strategies and customer service, Ashley loves traveling, reading, hiking, mountain biking, staring at the stars and being surrounded by laughter.
Rudi Eiter Operations Manager
Rudi Eiter has spent his entire career in hospitality. It is these years of first-hand experience in customer service that make him an asset at Monte Creek Ranch. His career began with his passion for food that lead Rudi to start out as a red seal Chef. You may have already noticed that his name is unique in Canada, along with his accent. He was born and raised in the St. Anton am Arlberg in the Austrian Alps of Tirol.
Rudi’s early working years were spent mainly in Switzerland and Austria. He landed in Canada in 1987, for a one year contract with a Swiss managed restaurant in Toronto. Rudi enjoyed his time in Canada so much that this job opportunity turned into him becoming a permanent resident shortly after that.
One of Rudi’s highlight was working for Delta Hotels & Resort where he became the General Manger for the Tantalus Lodge Resort in Whistler.
When Rudi isn’t at the winery he enjoys various activities throughout the year. In the summer he spends his days fishing, riding his road cycle or running on one of the many trails in the nearby mountains. Winter it is all about downhill skiing and watching his favourite hockey team the Edmonton Oilers.
Shelley Fairbairn Office Coordinator
Shelley Fairbairn is the Office Coordiantor at Monte Creek Ranch Winery and brings to the group an endless passion for all things database-related. Shelley has dabbled in various industries over the years that has created quite the unique resume. She has a certificate in Television Broadcasting and a degree in Human Resources Management from BCIT. Before her time here at the ranch, she worked in electronic retail for over 20 years.
Her childhood is filled with fond memories that come with growing up on her family’s ranch in Alberta. It was in these early years that she developed a passion for agriculture and Canadian history. There were many nights around the campfire spent sharing the tales of the people and of the land. This is a passion that Shelley shares in the tasting room when she can be pulled away from her desk to the tasting bar.
In more recent history, Shelley chose to settle in the small settlement of Pritchard, located just past the winery. This area caught her eye as it has a small community, has easy access to all the beauty the ‘West’ has to offer and the opportunity to explore the next frontier in winemaking. She is thrilled to be a part of the Monte Creek Ranch Winery team by working with databases to help grow the business.
When Shelley isn’t formatting and decrypting excel sheets, she enjoys camping, kayaking and taking her dog Teek for long walk around the parks and common land in the beautiful Thompson Valley.
Maeghan Summers Tasting Room Manager
Meghan is easily recognized for her silly spirit, but serious work ethic. She has made a name for herself through her 24 years in the hospitality industry by working with organizations such as Delta Hotels, Rocky Mountaineer and Thompson Rivers University’s Accolades dining room as a sessional instructor.
Other notable accomplishment this Kamloops local has under her belt is being a partner of the Noble Pig Brew House (which has been named as one of the top places to eat in “where to Eat Canada” Anne Hardy) and was a finalist for young entrepreneur of the year with the Kamloops Chamber of Commerce in 2014 and 2015.
Maeghan graduated from Thompson Rivers University with a Hotel and Resort Diploma, but her passion for hospitality and customer service started at a much younger age. The first job Maeghan had was a serving job at 9-years-old; she wanted to save up to buy a dirt bike.
When Maeghan isn’t busying running the tasting room, and planning weddings and events, she loves 4×4-ing in her Jeep, running the beautiful trails around Kamloops and being out at Adams Lake in her family’s boat. She is a true advocate of supporting local, especially when it comes to beverage and food.
“I have always loved how food and beverage brings people together to share moments and create memories. The ranch is a magical place that brings guests together to enjoy those very things. I look forward to helping to build those moments and showcase the amazing place that is Monte Creek Ranch Winery.”
Marc Andre Brzustowski Assistant Tasting Room Manager
The reclusive hermit painter is rarely seen in public, preferring the isolated and scenic corners of the central interior and the confines of his studio space. On rare occasions, he will be seen working the tasting bar, giving a tour, teaching an art class or driving the forklift around the very scenic Monte Creek Ranch Winery.
Having lived in Ontario, Quebec and Nova Scotia, the hermit painter now calls Kamloops home and has been working at the ranch since June of 2015.