Benchmark Wine Group, Napa Valley’s premier reseller of fine and rare wine, welcomes long time collector, enthusiast, and advisor Kerry Kaplan as President.
Before he turned his passion for wine into a career, Kaplan’s endeavors were in marketing and healthcare. Here, with his knack for business assessment, development and execution, he ascended quickly. From Vice President of Marketing with Metro Health Plan to Marketing Director of MuiltiGroup Health Plan, then onto Omnidentix Systems as their VP of Marketing. Finally, Kaplan founded Healthcare Connections, where his clients included General Motors, Cigna, Wellpoint and the National Restaurant Association.
Kaplan entered the wine field with his first job in Berkeley, then in 1973 when he opened Lake Merrit Wine and Cheese shop in Oakland, California. Over the years, Kaplan participated in several world-renowned wine tasting groups, honing his palate and comprehensive wine knowledge. This was also how he was able to meet his 3 mentors: Rare Wine Company’s Mannie Burke, Neyers Vineyards Bruce Neyers and of course our very own Proprietor, David Parker, who Kaplan met in a tasting led by wine icon Bipin Desai. The evolution from wine lover to client to advisor to president was a natural one for Kaplan, and with his notable background in marketing, leadership and wine, we would be hard pressed to find a more suitable President.
“There is no higher honor in life than having those mentors,” Kerry Kaplan said in praise of Burke, Neyers and Parker.
Kaplan gradated from University of Indiana with a BS in Business in 1970, and again in 1972 with a MS in Administration of Higher Education. He also supplemented his wine knowledge with classes at the University of California, Berkeley.