After spending 20 years as an executive in financial services, Ellen gave up the corporate world to work in the wine industry. In 1998 she joined Rudd Winery in Napa, where she launched and managed a new luxury wine brand. During her 10 years there, she also served as the executive director of the Rudd Group, which included Rudd Winery, Dean & DeLuca, Edge Hill Winery, Distillery No. 209, PRESS Restaurant and Oakville Grocery. In 2004 she and her husband Robert decided to move north and purchase their estate vineyard in McMinnville. In addition to co-managing Brittan Vineyards, Ellen served as the first director of wine education at Linfield College. She is also chair emerita of the Oregon Wine Board, past president of the Oregon Winegrowers Association and currently serves on the boards of the International Pinot Noir Celebration, the Oregon Chardonnay Celebration and Visit McMinnville.