Meet our People

The Right Location Makes the Perfect Grapes. The Right People make all the Difference.

Richard Fortune - Owner & Proprietor

Shady Lane-Richard Fortune-Owner

In March of 2013, Richard Fortune became the proud new owner of Shady Lane Cellars.

Originally from Indianapolis, Indiana the Fortune family have been visiting Leelanau County for over 50 years and were familiar with the incredible beauty and richness that it had to offer. After building a home in the county, Mr. Fortune planted his own vineyard on the west side of Lake Leelanau, named Hennessey Harbor Vineyards.




Kasey Wierzba - Executive Winemaker & General Manager


Kasey began her journey at Shady Lane Cellars as Assistant Winemaker in 2013, rose to
Winemaker in 2016 and earned her place as Executive Winemaker and General Manager in
Summer 2022. Prior to her adventures on the Leelanau Peninsula, Kasey spent seven years in
Napa Valley working for Far Niente, Rudd, and Frog’s Leap wineries. She earned her bachelor’s
and master’s degrees in Horticulture from Michigan State University. Wierzba and her family live
in Traverse City, where they spend time mountain biking, downhill skiing and playing piano
together. When she’s not at Shady Lane Cellars, she enjoys traveling with her family.



Maddie Vint - Assistant Winemaker & Quality Control Manager

MaddieMaddie Vint joined Shady Lane's team as Assistant Winemaker in 2022. Born and raised in central Indiana, Maddie followed her family's footsteps by graduating from Purdue University in 2019 with a bachelor’s degree in Agriculture Business. Throughout college, Maddie worked as a cellar intern at Black Star Farms, followed by a production manager role at Carpenter Creek Cellars, where she later held a position as assistant winemaker for 2 years. After achieving an Enology degree in 2021, Vint moved out West to get more hands-on experience in Sonoma, California at Ram’s Gate Winery before finding her home base in Northern Michigan. Outside of wine, you can find her spending time with her golden retriever, Lola, on the trails mountain biking, or on the slopes downhill skiing with her husband, Brian! 



Andy Fles - Vineyard & Facilities Manager

Andy Fles

Andy joined our team in 2013, after spending some time with Peninsula Cellars on neighboring Old Mission Peninsula. After completing his horticulture degree at Michigan State University, Andy cut his teeth at a vineyard management company in Oregon. He is considered an invaluable resource at the winery and a bottomless well of plant knowledge, making him an essential part of the team. When he’s not working, he is likely spending time with family and friends or lacing up his shoes for a long run.




Missy Check - Hospitality & Event Sales Manager


Missy joined our team in October 2022. She oversees all aspects of the estate winery’s tasting room experience. She also manages event sales, operations and execution. Missy earned her bachelor’s degree in theater education from Ohio State University before growing her career in cities across the country. She is a self proclaimed food-enthusiast and enjoys spending time with her husband and her 3 children. When she’s not working or spending time with family, she can be found traveling, taking in concerts, playing board games, or heading straight to the water to go boating or fly-fishing.






Luke Hershey - Wine Club & E-Commerce Manager

LukeLuke Hershey is our E-commerce and Wine Club Manager. He has been with Shady Lane since 2017. In 2020 he became our Tasting Room Manager and in 2022 moved into a role to better benefit our wine club and online customers. Luke has spent his entire life visiting Northern Michigan before making a full time move to the area in 2015. Luke has a passion for being in nature and being active. He and his wife (along with their two dogs) enjoy spending their free time traveling in a converted van exploring the wilderness.






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