About an hour and a half north of San Francisco is the Napa Valley, a mecca to wine lovers across the country and around the world. For Ceja Vineyards winemaker Dalia Ceja, wine is her business and her life: She works hard every day to meet the needs of the vineyard as well as its clients.
But Ceja’s job is also a family affair. Her parents immigrated from Mexico and struggled from being vineyard workers to vineyard owners.
“My parents came from villages where there’s no running water or electricity, so we literally had to start from scratch,” Ceja says.
Today, Ceja celebrates its heritage as one of the pioneering Mexican-American wineries and proves that the American dream is very much alive.
“Being a Latina in the wine industry is very empowering,” she says.
Ceja first started working for the company in her mid-twenties after graduating from San Francisco State University and now holds the title of director of sales and marketing. Selling wine is a hustle, she tells us. She works directly with buyers in all the states their wine is sold to promote brand awareness and drive up sales.
“The biggest misconception about being a vitner in the Napa Valley is that we’re snobby, we’re pretentious,” she says. “So not true.”