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Meet the Team

From the vineyards to our winery, the wine club to our tasting room, our talented team is committed to producing award-winning wines and making your visit memorable.

Chris Ritzcovan

Winemaker

Growing up amongst a family of gardeners and home winemakers, Chris learned at an early age to appreciate the natural world and it’s richness. After graduating from the University of Virginia, his path lead to Jefferson Vineyards where he found his true calling and joined the winemaking team in 2007. Upon being appointed Winemaker in 2013, Chris has continued the tradition of crafting award winning wines and has won prestigious medals in the country’s top competitions. In his free time, when he’s not busy renovating his house, Chris can found exploring Charlottesville with his wife, Allison, and their son, Gus.

Attila Woodward

Managing Partner

Born and raised in Spain, Attila grew up surrounded by strong wine traditions. Attila got an early start in our vineyards after spending two summers in the vines, under the guidance of our first winemaker, Gabriele Rausse. After business endeavors in Asia, Europe and Africa, Attila returned to Virginia in 2013 to provide a new direction to Jefferson Vineyards. Attila enjoys navigating on the Chesapeake. When anchored on the Bay he enjoys a tasty bottle of Jefferson Vineyards Viognier.

Paul Villageliu

Tasting Room Manager

Paul first joined the team at Jefferson Vineyards in 2014 working on our summer concerts before expanding into the winery and tasting room. With a deep passion for good conversation and all things horticultural, Paul is a perfect match here at the tasting room. As a history graduate of Northern Virginia Community College and George Mason University, Paul loves to talk about the history of our property.

Layne Johnson

Wine Club Manager

Layne joined the Jefferson Vineyards family in 2017 as a member of the harvest team. After spending the summer in the winery, Layne transitioned into her role as Wine Club Manager where she connects with potential and current members, plans member-only events and processes orders. She can also be seen behind the bar in the Tasting Room pouring wine, educating visitors, and supervising the team. Layne enjoys running, baking and spending time with her dog, Millie.

David Woodside

Assitant Winemaker

David is a Charlottesville native who found his love for wine in the very area he was raised. While attending James Madison University, he first joined our team working as Tasting Room Ambassador. Upon graduating in 2013, he moved up the ranks and into the production side of the industry where he found his true passion. David enjoys a good round of golf, long walks with his dog, Malcolm, and rooting for his hometown Virginia Cavaliers.

Hector, Nora & Karla Guzman

Onsite Vineyard Team

For the past 12 years, vineyard foreman Hector Guzman, has been responsible for the day-to-day care of our 22 acres of vines. Raised in Guanajuato, Mexico, his previous experience includes tending apple orchards in New York and orange groves in Florida. In the vineyard, he is joined by his wife Nora and eldest daughter, Karla. The whole family often surprises us with delicious crafted Mexican meals that delight our team.

Steve & Leslie Weinhardt

Wine Festival Team

Steve and Leslie Weinhardt have worked wine festivals and off-site events for Jefferson Vineyards since 2002. They now lead our festivals team and are truly our “wine ambassadors in the field”. Steve, a retired Navy Commander, and Leslie, a retired Marine Lieutenant Colonel met while serving at the Pentagon. Together they share a love for fine wines, delicious food and good fellowship.

The Woodward Family

For almost forty years, three generations of Woodwards have been at the helm of Jefferson Vineyards.  In 1981, Stanley Woodward Sr. & Shirley Woodward, under the guidance of viticulturalist Gabriele Rausse, led the replanting of the vines on our estate.  Their small business soon flourished. 

Stanley's son, Stanley Woodward Jr. and his wife Marie Jose Woodward were both instrumental in the evolution of Jefferson Vineyards.  Stanley Jr. studied in Paris after World War II and lived in Spain for more than 30 years.  His wife, Marie Jose Woodward, grew up in a farming family in France.  During their time in Europe, both developed a deep knowledge of Old World wines.  When they moved to Virginia in 1992, they brought this knowledge to our wine business.  Along with the help of talented winemakers, they elevated the quality of wine production on the estate. 

This knowledge set a strong foundation for the third generation of Woodwards to take over the reins at Jefferson Vineyards.  In 2013, siblings Attila & Alexa Woodward relocated to manage the estate.  With the support of other family members, Attila became the Managing Partner in 2016, entrusted with preserving and improving this unique property, while retaining its rustic character.