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Kathryn Walt Hall, Vintner

Kathryn Walt HallKathryn Walt Hall is the proprietor of HALL Wines and has been involved in the California wine industry since her family first purchased a vineyard more than thirty years ago. She has had a distinguished career as a successful businesswoman, community activist, and most recently as the United States Ambassador to Austria.

Kathryn Hall and her family have been grape growers in Mendocino County since 1972. The Walt family owns 63 acres of Cabernet Sauvignon, Gamay, Zinfandel, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Sauvignon Blanc in the Redwood Valley and has sold their grapes to such wineries as Fetzer, Parducci, and Beringer. Kathryn managed the family vineyard from 1982 to 1992. During this time she produced Sauvignon Blanc and Cabernet Sauvignon under the label Walt Vineyards. Continuing her family tradition, she maintains a strong emotional attachment to vineyards, wine, and the wine country.

Kathryn began her public career as assistant city attorney in Berkeley, California. Later she joined Safeway Stores, where she was responsible for developing and administering one of the nation’s first and largest affirmative action programs. Subsequently she worked as an attorney and businesswoman in Dallas, Texas, where she was president of an inner city development company and partner of Hall Financial Group, Inc.

Long committed to social issues, Kathryn has served on numerous non-profit and institutional boards, addressing issues related to social care and mental health. She cofounded the North Texas Food Bank, served on the United States House of Representatives Hunger Advisory Committee, and was the director/vice president of the Texas Mental Health Association. Kathryn has served on the National Advisory Council for Violence Against Women and as a trustee of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars.

From December 1997 to July 2001, Kathryn served as the United States Ambassador to Austria. During her term as ambassador, she worked hard to promote American wine in Austria and Europe. Since her return to America, she has resumed her role as proprietor of Kathryn Hall Vineyards. Continuing upon her experience promoting American agriculture in Austria, in September 2001 she was appointed to the United States Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Technical Advisory Committee (ATAC) for international trade.

Kathryn earned an A.B. in Economics from the University of California, Berkeley, and a J.D. from the University of California Hastings College of Law. She is married to Craig Hall and the mother of two children. She speaks French and German.